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The Chicago Teachers Union election is not until May. But the coalition of snakes appears well-funded.

February 21, 2013

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Former failed CTU President Debbie Lynch has joined the coalition of snakes.

Chicago Teachers Union elections are not until May 17th.

Tanya Saunders-Wolffe is the candidate of the United Progressive Caucus (UPC). The last UPC candidate, the incumbent Marilyn Stewart, was tossed out of office by Karen Lewis and the CORE caucus in the last election.

To nobody’s surprise the UPC is back to try to regain the keys to the CTU offices in the Merchandise Mart.

What may surprise some is the support Saunders-Wolfe is receiving from Debbie Lynch and her ProActive Chicago Teachers (PACT) caucus. Debbie Lynch, who was at one time perceived by some as a union reformer, was rejected by the membership after just one term.

Why did many rank-and-file members express their dissatisfaction with Lynch? I believe it was due to Lynch’s overly-collaborative approach to then-CPS schools boss Arne Duncan’s so-called reform efforts at the expense of service to members and defense of the bargaining agreement.

Lynch has now signed up to be part of the Coalition to Save Our Union alongside of the UPC.

Save the union?

Or hand it over to Rahm and the Civic Committee?

Lynch is no longer a teacher and cannot run herself. But her history in the union’s national bureaucracy is long, including strong ties to the national leadership of the AFT going all the way back to her training at the union’s Albert Shanker Institute.

It kind of makes me wonder what or who is motivating her?

As for the UPC caucus, I have already reported that I have heard whispers that Rahm and his pals in the Civic Committee were fishing for a candidate to run against Lewis and the CORE caucus-endorsed candidates.

Even to the point of putting some cash on the end of that fishing line.

Now I hear that Saunders-Wolfe, or her supporters, are looking to buy some TV ad time. A teacher union candidate doing a TV ad buy? Two months before the election?

Where is the money for all this coming from?

4 Comments leave one →
  1. phillipcantor permalink
    February 21, 2013 6:15 am

    Bloomberg is probably ready to write a check…

    Sent from my iPad so please excuse autocorrect errors.

  2. February 21, 2013 7:43 am

    Maybe Rauner. Did you catch his performance on Chicago Tonight Wednesday? He is also “just considering” a run for office – the governor’s. As head of the Civic Club he has lots of money to pour into a campaign. He was touting some carnival like plan to entice foreign visitors so he can create low paying jobs (his words)that would help those in underserved neighborhoods. When asked how philanthropy would be willing to come up with the 30 billion needed to complete his plan, he stated that the city would also contribute, but that private business would also participate as an investment. Who is going to make off on this one? You do not even need to read between the lines.

  3. Linda permalink
    February 23, 2013 9:04 am

    Why would Rahm want to replace Lewis? He got everything he wanted from the teachers and then some. The fact is the teachers are working a LONGER day and their pay for the additional time is less than the minimum wage. What a DEAL for Rahm. What a loss for the teachers. Thanks to Lewis, Senate Bill 7 passed. That is the most anti-Chicago teachers legislation ever. Lewis can fool the teachers once but hopefully they are starting to live the contract and realize just how much they LOST.

    • Fred Klonsky permalink*
      February 23, 2013 9:13 am

      So, let me understand you Linda. You think Rahm won all his demands and even more? I suggest that if you are a teacher (which is questionable since you keep referring to teachers in the third person) and are working for less than minimum wage, you should read your contract, contact a union rep and file a grievance. Senate Bill 7 was indeed passed. But claiming Karen Lewis was responsible for that piece of crap is a revision history. I consider myself an expert on SB7, as I was the President of the only IEA local union in the state that opposed it at the time. This blog was also responsible for the wide availability of the Jonah Edeleman video describing how SB7 went down. Linda – try and use facts. Go watch the video and report back what Edelman says about Karen Lewis’ role in the meetings with IEA and IFT leaders on SB7. Your characterization is flat-out fiction. Your solution: Return to the CTU leadership of the old days? Please!

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