What's wrong with this picture?
When Victory Baptist Pastor Rollan Roberts campaigned for the WV Senate in 2016, one of his platform planks was ‘education reform’. After he was elected to represent Raleigh County, he co-sponsored the Omnibus Education Reform bill, which led to the second teacher’s strike. This bill included a school voucher program which would take public education money and gives it to private schools.
It just so happens Roberts and his wife make most of their wages from the private school his church operates.
So, basically Roberts is setting up a way for his parishioners to send their kids to his private parochial school where he and his wife get their paychecks.
What’s wrong with this picture? Judges are supposed to ‘recuse’ themselves from ruling on cases where they have a conflict of interest. Shouldn’t our lawmakers likewise be barred from sponsoring and passing laws that will directly put money in their pockets?
Roberts co-sponsored, amended, and voted to move the Omnibus Education Bill through the state Senate. Only on the last vote—on passing it over to the House—did he ask to be ‘excused’ from voting. Senate President Carmichael told him it was just fine to vote to benefit himself and his wife.
We don’t think this is “just fine.” We think that lawmakers shouldn’t vote to line their pockets.
If they do, we should vote them out.