Union voters played an important role in President-elect Barack Obama’s historic victory, delivering a critical bloc of support in swing states that helped propel Obama and other worker-friendly candidates to big wins on Nov. 4, according to polling data from the AFL-CIO.
High turnout among working-class union voters in states like Michigan, Ohio and Pennsylvania formed a foundation of support for Obama. In new battleground states like Colorado, Florida, North Carolina and Virginia, the AFL-CIO mounted a bigger effort than ever before, and union members voted by large margins for Obama.
AFL-CIO union members across battleground states supported Obama by a 68 percent to 30 percent margin, according to an election-night survey conducted for the AFL-CIO by Peter D. Hart Research Associates. More »
7:30 am: My plan was to get to the poll at the opening, 6 am, and cast my ballot quickly. At 6:05 am the line was incredibly long … took me an hour and a half. A friendly line, we chatted, talked about the historic nature of the election, no one argued, the polling people were well-organized and I pulled down my mechanical handles and swung the lever to the left, a solid “clunk,” as the decades old machine registered my vote.
10:30 am: The line is longer!! The line usually abates as folks move on to work, not today… More »
Immediately moving the historic 2008 presidential election from the voting booth to the classroom, the AFT has launched a Web site for educators that provides information, materials and lesson plans to help students absorb the many teachable moments of this history-making campaign. More »
Citing President-elect Barack Obama and Vice President-elect Joe Biden’s “powerful promise of hope and their sound solutions to the country’s most vexing problems” as the keys that helped them win the nation’s trust and confidence, AFT President Randi Weingarten congratulated the winning candidates on their extraordinary Nov. 4 election victory.
“So much about this campaign has been historic and electrifying,” Weingarten said. “The incredible voter interest Barack Obama generated, especially among young, independent and first-time voters; the sea change in voting patterns across America; and the election of America’s first African-American president are all extraordinary milestones for our country. I am hopeful that this civic excitement and engagement will be sustained for the benefit of our great democracy. More »
As the economic crisis that has come in the wake of Wall Street’s financial meltdown deepens, one response from the American right has already begun to take shape – a politics of resentment and fear. For these laissez-faire market evangelists of deregulation and unfettered corporate power and greed, the current economic debacle is not a reason to reflect on the real world consequences of their ideological dogma, but a political opportunity to pursue ‘divide and conquer’ strategies designed to set working people against each other. More »
Hyperbole is the currency of presidential campaigns, but this year the nation’s future truly hangs in the balance.
The United States is battered and drifting after eight years of President Bush’s failed leadership. He is saddling his successor with two wars, a scarred global image and a government systematically stripped of its ability to protect and help its citizens — whether they are fleeing a hurricane’s floodwaters, searching for affordable health care or struggling to hold on to their homes, jobs, savings and pensions in the midst of a financial crisis that was foretold and preventable.
As tough as the times are, the selection of a new president is easy. After nearly two years of a grueling and ugly campaign, Senator Barack Obama of Illinois has proved that he is the right choice to be the 44th president of the United States.
In a flawed argument, Eduwonk’s Andy Rotherham has weighed in on the free political expression issue, taking the side of Tweed’s prohibitions, just as a United States District Judge issued a preliminary injunction against the DoE on two of the three issues raised by the UFT. [The New York Times reports the judge's decision here; read the actual decision here.]
According to Rotherham, it is “hysterical” to think that First Amendment issues are raised when a government entity like the NYC Department of Education limits free political expression. More »
With his usual sense of impeccable timing, Joe Williams chose the very moment that the UFT offices had an anthrax scare, as a threatening letter containing white powder was sent to our building because we house Obama’s New York campaign offices, to announce that the UFT was opposing the DoE’s ban on political campaign buttons to “make it look like [we] are strong Obama supporters.”
Yes, Joe, we put your bosom pals at Tweed up to changing decades of policy, spent two weeks in a vain effort to convince them to restore past practice and then went to federal court just to look like “strong Obama supporters.” More »
The AFT Committee on Political Education (AFT-COPE) has launched independent expenditure radio ads in eight key battleground states — Florida, Ohio, Pennsylvania, New Hampshire, New Mexico, Virginia, West Virginia, and Wisconsin. The 60-second ads feature local AFT members speaking about how Barack Obama will get our country back on track. They will continue to run through Nov. 3.