Make no mistake. The Republican spin machine is out in force trying to cover up the damage they’ve done to public education. The truth-challenged Governor Pat McCrory was leading the charge, claiming that the education budget was more than last year. He was backed up by a flurry of tweets from his amen corner of administration flacks, Republican legislative staff and Locke Foundation staffers.

What they don’t tell you is that the budget is still below pre-recession levels and doesn’t take into account increased enrollment or inflation. K-12 schools are getting screwed out of at least $117 million. The AP reports, “The University of North Carolina system will get $126.5 million less than what was projected as needed to maintain last year’s levels. Community colleges will get $16 million less.”

It’s their whole Orwellian approach to governing. Call something what it’s not and keep repeating it until people believe it. Voter suppression is election protection. Closing women’s health clinics is protecting women’s health. Cutting money for public schools is increasing education funding.

I called it spin, but it’s not that. It’s outright deception. They know they’ve cut education. They know they’re trying to deny certain voters access to the ballot box. And they know they are trying to limit women’s right to choose. They also know that those positions could cost them their power.

The current Republicans have little respect for democracy and less respect for the voters. With their “fool-some-of-the-people-all-of-the-time” strategy, they deny their intentions, distort the numbers and hope enough people don’t notice. Unfortunately for them, women are noticing, teachers are noticing, African-Americans are noticing and when school starts back, parents will be noticing.

Next year on Election Day, let’s make the Republicans notice, too.

Thomas Mills is the founder and publisher of PoliticsNC.com. Before beginning PoliticsNC, Thomas spent twenty years as a political and public affairs consultant. Learn more >

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