Pro-science groups urge Republican governors to reject conspiracy theories in education

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Ron DeSantis, Greg Abbott and Glenn Yankin

Paul Hennessy | SOPA Images | LightRocket via Getty Images; Lucas Jackson | Reuters; Win McNamee | Getty Images

A scientific advocacy organization that supports the Democratic Party is launching a $10 million campaign that includes pushing Republican governor and Republican governor candidates to reject conspiracy theories that led to disputes on the school board.

As debates about vaccines, science, and race become more intense and partisan in debates about education policy, this impetus follows.

314 Action is a 501(c)(4) non-profit organization that aims to elect candidates with science, technology, mathematics, or engineering backgrounds for public office. It plans to spend up to $500,000 from the initial stage of its campaign to the end of the election. year.

This will include digital advertising that will begin this month. The other stages of the campaign will begin next year and pass the 2022 midterm elections.

The ads that will begin this month will target five Republican governors: Greg Abbott of Texas, Ron DeSantis of Florida, Golden Reynolds of Iowa and Arizona State Doug Dusey. Glenn Youngin, a former executive of the Carlyle Group and Republican candidate for the governor of Virginia, will also be targeted.

Abbott, DeSantis, Reynolds and Kemp will all run for re-election in 2022. Youngkin competed with Democrat Terry McAuliffe in the November election. Opinion polls show fierce competition in Virginia.

“So you either support the violent thug or oppose it,” Josh Morrow, executive director of 314 Action, told CNBC. “In fact, these school board members attend these school board meetings and are yelled at, throwing things at them, and their lives are threatened. For us, it’s like if you think it’s okay, then you will have this kind of violence Radical thug.”

Virginia’s governor’s campaign included a debate about how the state should handle public education.

“I don’t think parents should tell the school what they should teach,” McAuliffe said in a debate last month. Youngkin has stated that if he becomes governor, his government will prohibit schools from teaching critical racial theory, which is an academic method of studying the effects of racism. Republicans are largely opposed to teaching critical racial theory.

The 314 Action ad, originally reviewed by CNBC, portrayed violence across the country, and then turned into images of people propagating conspiracy theories at school board meetings.

“A violent fanatic right wing driven by an anti-science conspiracy,” said the voiceover. “When the violent and fanatical right rages, Republican leaders are in a dangerous state of silence.” Then, these attractions call on every governor and Youngkin to “stand on the side of science and reject right-wing violence in our school board.”

Many of the clips used in the ad are identical to those in the video montage made by The Recount.

Other aspects of the campaign will be made public in the first quarter of 2022. The next phase will also include a digital advertisement praising Democratic Representative Sean Caston for “believing in a vaccine.” Casten has a master’s degree in engineering management and a master’s degree in biochemical engineering

314 Action publicly disclosed its donors. It has been lagging behind previous efforts against some governors that it has targeted in its new $10 million campaign.

According to the organization’s website, several doctors and scientists donated more than $10,000 to 314 Action this year.

The organization said they helped Democrats in 2018 and 2020, including former astronaut and Arizona Senator Mark Kelly, and Colorado Senator John Hickenlooper, who is also a geologist .

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