Sarah Palin wasn’t the only speaker who appealed to families of children with disabilities during the Republican National Convention. During John McCain’s acceptance speech, he also directed attention to a family in the audience whom McCain believes his policies would help.
I fight for Jake and Toni Wimmer of Franklin County, Pennsylvania. Jake works on a loading dock, coaches Little League, and raises money for the mentally and physically disabled. Toni is a schoolteacher, working toward her master's degree. They have two sons; the youngest, Luke, has been diagnosed with autism. Their lives should matter to the people they elect to office. They matter to me.
Could that have been a time for McCain to slide a quick sentence mentioning his support for more federal funding for special education? He’s already on record with this. It might have made a nice counterpoint to Palin’s declaration that parents of children with disabilities would find a “friend and advocate” in the White House with her.
A version of this news article first appeared in the On Special Education blog.