In June, the United Federation of Teachers (UFT) endorsed Democrat Bill Thompson for mayor of New York City. Over the past three months, the UFT and its political action committee has spent more than $1 million to boost Thompson.
SchoolBook, in an attempt to determine how influential this endorsement was with the City's teachers, conducted an informal survey of teachers across NYC. Their results were striking - a large contingent of teachers in the UFT were not planning to vote for Thompson, the most common alternative being Democrat Bill de Blasio. Many teachers were unhappy with the endorsement process:
Some teachers said they weren't happy with the way the union endorsement was handled, claiming that the fix was in from the start. They pointed to the fact that the influential president of the American Federation of Teachers, Randi Weingarten, threw her support early behind Thompson, whom she knew from when she headed the UFT and he was president of the former Board of Education.