Is the alliance between Mayor Bill de Blasio and the United Federation of Teachers (UFT) progressive or political? Investigative journalist Wayne Barrett argues it’s political.
In his New York Daily News op-ed, Barrett states that Mayor de Blasio is placing teachers before students through his alliance with the UFT:
Mayor de Blasio, at this moment, has the power to define what's progressive in New York. He has unfortunately transferred the credibility he's earned on other fronts to a union, embracing its positions on charter schools, a new contract and tenure and seniority protections that are anything but progressive.
With de Blasio and the UFT-financed Working Families Party as allies, the union is hijacking the very language of movement politics, annexing left journalism to defend its narrowest interests and even recruiting progressives to join its war against charter schools that work for kids.
Barrett continues to point out that Mayor de Blasio is the only Democrat mayor who does not support charter schools:
As quiet as it's kept, de Blasio is the only mayor of one of America's 10 largest cities, almost all Democrats, who isn't a charter booster. The thousand-strong U.S. Conference of Mayors, headed by the black mayor of Sacramento, strongly backs charters, as do such prominent Democrats as California Gov. Jerry Brown, the new housing secretary and ex-San Antonio mayor Julian Castro, Denver's Michael Hancock, Philadelphia's Michael Nutter, New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker and the left-of-Hillary hope Martin O'Malley, Maryland's governor.