The American Federation of Teachers (AFT) one of Connecticut’s two teachers’ unions, has now officially endorsed Gov. Dannel P. Malloy’s reelection bid, despite third-party candidate Jon Pelto repeatedly calling Malloy “anti-teacher.”
What does this prove? I can think of at least two takeaways from the AFT’s endorsement of Malloy:
1. Though he didn’t always say or do what the union wanted, Malloy has done more for education in Connecticut than any governor in recent memory, and the union knows it.
2. Pelto lives in a fantasy world, in which a dried-up has-been legislator knows more about education than the governor and the teachers union.
But don’t take my word for it. What does Stephen McKeever, a former 17-year veteran Middletown High School science teacher now serving as AFT Connecticut’s first vice-president, have to say on the subject?
“We need leaders committed to preserving the rights of all workers to collectively bargain and not gutting union members’ benefits to score political points,” McKeever said.
Or, how about AFT Connecticut’s second vice-president, Jean Morningstar, who was employed by the UConn Health Center in Farmington for 27 years before retiring?
“The stakes are too high to make the wrong choice,” Morningstar said. “We understand that we need a voice at work and a seat at the table with elected officials to advocate for ourselves, our families, and our communities.”
The AFT, if I may remind you, represents 29,000 Connecticut teachers, nurses and public service professionals.
Who does Jon Pelto represent — you know, other than himself?
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