John King, who served as secretary of education from 2016 to 2017 under then-President Barack Obama, will run for governor of Maryland in 2022, he announced Tuesday.
King centers schools and racial equity issues in his announcement video. He is the fourth Democrat to declare for the race, according to WTOP News. Republican Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan is nearing the end of his second term and can not run again.
King’s website claims that he will “expand economic opportunity and dignity, create more good-paying jobs, and ensure all Marylanders have access to affordable, quality health care and a healthy, sustainable environment.” He also will “ensure [that] government is a force for good in people’s lives.” (RELATED: Obama’s Outgoing Secretary Of Education Calls For ‘Safe Spaces’ On ALL College Campuses)
As secretary of education and New York’s education commissioner, King was a proponent of the Obama Administration’s Common Core standardized testing. Nearly 20% of eligible New York students did not take the Common Core test in 2015, King’s last full year as education commissioner, after parents boycotted the tests. Left-wing activists increasingly view standardized tests, including the SAT and ACT, as contributing to systemic racism.
King also contributed to the Department of Education’s deeper involvement in race and gender issues. He sent a 2016 letter warning public schools that the Obama administration determined that allowing transgender students to use the bathroom and locker room corresponding with their gender identity was a civil rights requirement.
King also issued guidance recommending that colleges stop asking students about their criminal records. The Education Department claimed that doing so was a racial justice issue.
“Data show plainly that people of color are more likely to come in contact with the justice system due, in part, to punitive school disciplinary policies that disproportionately impact certain student groups and racial profiling,” King’s report claimed.