Another mayoral election has come and gone, and Mayor-for-life Bloomberg has once again prevailed, buying the election fair and square. Mayor Mike pulled a hundred million bucks out of his sizable pockets, blanketed the metropolitan area with vomit-inducing commercials and persuaded 5% more voters than Thompson did. To accomplish that, he spent 14 times as much as Thompson.
In my discussions with UFT reps, they explained it was prudent to withhold an endorsement. Why? First of all, a Thompson endorsement would mean an immediate halt to contract negotiations. The incredible corruption evident in that assertion, in my view, ought to have been enough to pull out all the stops against this character. More importantly, depending on whom you asked, the UFT endorsement would only be able to turn 3 to 5% of the voters. Well, if you buy that, we'd have won.
Now if you're one of the folks who'd made the awful decision to sit this one out, and you're reading this, you might say, "But NYC Educator, didn't Thompson say publicly we couldn't afford to give UFT members the 4 and 4 in the pattern?" Now I admit that's a good point. Why would anyone vote for a mayor who'd deny us a relatively decent pattern, after so many mayors held us to crap ones?
I'd have to respond, "True, but he only said that after the UFT publicly declined to endorse him. He'd never have made that statement if we'd done the right thing."
For a beleaguered union, timidity is not an option. We just learned that the hard way.
Views expressed herein are solely those of the author or authors, and do not reflect views of my employers, the United Federation of Teachers, the MORE Caucus or any other union caucus.
Stories herein containing unnamed or invented characters are works of fiction. Names, characters, businesses, places, events and incidents are either the products of the author’s imagination or used in a fictitious manner. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, or actual events is purely coincidental.