Tuesday, October 11, 2005
40% of the Delegates to the DA Vote Against Contract Proposal Despite Leadership Attempt at Vote Manipulation
In a shameful display of filibuster tactic Randi Weingarten demonstrated she can try to stop the rejection of her sell-out contract offer but a large part of our Union won’t bite.
The Delegate Assembly opened up with a promise by the president that she would not “motivate” the resolution to send the contract proposal to the schools. She called for a motion to suspend Roberts’ Rules (which can only legally be done by Constitutional Amendment) so that we could have a “fair” debate.
Fifteen minutes into a non-stop advertisement for the resolution we sought a point of order to limit her diatribe. Since she illegally ruled, all ready, that Roberts’ Rules did not apply, no point of order was ever in order. She continued…and continued….and continued…. for an hour!
When debate began it became clear that Union officials who have not worked in a school in a generation cajoled the delegates to save their jobs vote in favor of sending the proposal to the members. Delegates who taught in our schools argued how the proposal was anti-union and questioned why the leadership would have the temerity to recommend that the document go to the membership.
In perhaps one of the shortest Delegate Assemblies in recent memory and right on cue the question was called (somehow Roberts’ Rules resurrected itself) and the matter was put before the body with over 20 minutes left to the scheduled time for the meeting.
Randi somehow “forgot” about our agreement to instruct the retirees not to vote, so they voted. The body voted 70% in favor and 30% against. When the vote was redone due to our objection the vote was much closer, 60% in favor and 40% against.
This is an incredible showing given the nature of the Delegate Assembly and the attempt to manipulate the vote.
Our fight goes into the schools where, if we get the message out, we will defeat this proposal and get our negotiating committee back to the bargaining table. Tell your colleagues, friends and fellow Union members. We are the ones who will be working under the new rules. Don’t let our Union get destroyed. Vote No.