Thursday, November 24, 2016


AFT President Randi Weingarten issued a press release on Donald Trump's pick for Secretary of Education, Betsy DeVos.

The worst of privatization is coming. Prepare yourselves. It will take everything we have to save public education as we know it.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Press Release

AFT President Randi Weingarten on Nomination of Betsy DeVos as Secretary of Education

For Release: 

Wednesday, November 23, 2016


Greg Greene
(404) 808-0329

WASHINGTON—In response to President-elect Donald Trump’s nomination of Betsy DeVos to lead the Department of Education, AFT President Randi Weingarten issued the following statement:

“The president-elect, in his selection of Betsy DeVos, has chosen the most ideological, anti-public education nominee put forward since President Carter created a Cabinet-level Department of Education.

“In nominating DeVos, Trump makes it loud and clear that his education policy will focus on privatizing, defunding and destroying public education in America.

“DeVos has no meaningful experience in the classroom or in our schools. The sum total of her involvement has been spending her family’s wealth in an effort to dismantle public education in Michigan. Every American should be concerned that she would impose her reckless and extreme ideology on the nation.

“We have an obligation to all children in America. That’s why we’ve fought to ensure that struggling schools get fixed, that we fight for kids to have the powerful learning, the social and emotional and wraparound services, and the great teachers they need. That’s why we fight for parents to have the voice they need and communities throughout the country to have the local decision-making for their schools and the investment they need, so we do everything we can to help all children have a great public education. What this pick means is far from ensuring that every child has the option of a great public education—the many who have it now will lose it. That’s been the experience of 25 years of privatizing: It helps very few, and many students now go to schools that have faced years of austerity and disinvestment.

“Betsy DeVos is everything Donald Trump said is wrong in America—an ultra-wealthy heiress who uses her money to game the system and push a special-interest agenda that is opposed by the majority of voters. Installing her in the Department of Education is the opposite of Trump’s promise to drain the swamp.”


Anonymous said...

I guess RW is engaging in her own circular firing squad. How does this letter helps us? RW is a day late and a dollar short.

Anonymous said...

She's 10yrs late and millions of brain cells short.

Anonymous said...

This letter does exactly what? Rally the troops? Show how tough the AFT is against Trump and DeVos? We know its meaningless posturing, for our benefit. Are we to think that Trump or DeVos are shaking in their boots? They have to be laughing, if they are even aware of its existence. A profession killing mistake was made for us when Clinton was chosen over Sanders. You know what would make many UFT/AFT members feel better? The resignation of Ms.Weingarten. She simply is not capable of taking on Trump, charters, mayors, DeVos or anyone else, other than her own members. She has taken no responsibility for her decision or even apologized. Instead, we get this pathetic letter of bravado because she feels we are so stupid that it will suffice.

Anonymous said...

Do any of you have anything constructive to offer besides Randi's resignation which you know full well will not happen?

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

Missing point here: The UFT hates Trump. The DOE hates Trump. DeBlassio hates Trump. Now is the PERFECT time for the teachers in NYC to rally together for decent working conditions. We are about to get a new evaluation system. I am hoping they throw us a bone ion this one since Trump has nothing to do with it right now.

Anonymous said...

That would require intelligent union leadership which we might not have at the current time.

Anonymous said... experience. Mulgrew...delivers worst contract in Union history, allow us to get abused by everybody, caught having sex in school with staff member while cheating on spouse. We got what we deserve.

Anonymous said...

Randi does not realize her friend Hillary is now a punch line to a lame joke. Backing a loser means Trump can write you off. Great move Randi. Whining about the new Secretary of Education only reinforces the generally held (and growing) belief that the libs are essentially bunch of whining and identity-obsessed losers.
Best move for Randi is to shut up and resign. Perhaps somebody with credibility (either inside or outside the union) can take over for her.
At least she (Randi) is not leading the oddball protest marches... or is that next?

Anonymous said...

Was Arnie Duncan a friend to public school teachers and public education? Is the Mayor of Chicago a friend of public schools and public education? Did the Mayor of Chicago, who happened to work in the Obama Adminstration, close public schools and attempt to push out the door excessed teachers? Didn't we almost become a Right to Work nation under a Democratic Adminstration. The lies are just incredible. Did union membership increase or decrease during the last 8 years?

Anonymous said...

You think it gets better under Trump?

Anonymous said...

We just go from bad to worse?

Anonymous said...

I agree with 100% with 8:02. Weingarten needs to go, for all our sake.

Anonymous said...

You have done nothing by making comments on a blog to push Randi out.

Anonymous said...

Perhaps a statement by Randi that she is pleased to see this new Secretary of Education appointment and an acknowledgment that they can work together to undo Common Core and other faddish and failed 'innovations' of the last 20 years.

This unexpected curve ball would be a very clever way to curry popular and (Trump) administrative favor.

Areas of disagreement (notwithstanding their gravity) can be left unsaid at this point.

(Or Randi can just resign, allowing us to present a new face to the electorate and administration.)

Anonymous said...

Could someone offer a projection on how long they estimate it will take to dismantle public education in theUS?

Abigail Shure

Anonymous said...

10:18 there seems to be a lot of people who want her out. That's not nothing - well it is to Weingarten who is the AFT/UFT and who disregards everything the rank and file wants for her own personal ambition. Her letter is pure nonsense and accomplishes nothing.

Anonymous said...

Abigail, you'll see some of it start next September, especially in NYC. Two years, the first layoffs will start. ATRs will be the last to go because of LIFO. Ironic and justified.

Anonymous said...

Dear 10:18, Perhaps we should start an online petition? What's your point? You don't want criticism of Randi? Too fucking bad for you.

Anonymous said...

I stopped caring what Randi thought years ago. The surest way to lose my vote is to get endorsed by the likes of Randi Weingarten. The 2005 contract and every sell out move thereafter means I will vote for whomever is running against the candidate endorsed by the AFT/UFT. They have not earned our loyalty and I aint giving it away. And I agree with Anon 7:45--if you don't like criticism of Randi, too damn bad. I smiled when I heard Trump won. I smiled because it meant Randi and Hillary and the whole democratic party that took our vote for granted just had the rug pulled out from under them. I smiled for days afterward. It doesn't matter what Trump and his Ed Secty do because I know that the democrats have long forgotten about us and our fates have been sealed for quite some time already. You can believe life for teachers would have been better under Hillary if you want to. I don't. Obama with his RttT,his Ed Secretaries Duncan and King and the democratic governor in Albany all spit in our faces and I'm supposed to believe Hillary would have been a change agent??? I don't believe it for a minute. Roseanne McCosh

Anonymous said...

The quickest way for the American electorate to support Trump's appointment is for a union boss (AKA Randi) to come out strongly and publicly (and rudely) against it.

Who is advising her?

It is like the discredited New York Times attacking Trump. Again. In most of America, that helps Trump.

(PS, Why is Randi posting here at 2:40 and 10:18? It is kind of embarrassing.)

James Eterno said...

It just went from bad for us to a whole lot worse. Criticize Randi all you like. She certainly shares some of the responsibility for the mess we are in as a profession but I would rather work on organizing to start the fight back instead of just resigning ourselves to our fate.

James Eterno said...

I very much doubt that is Randi posting here although Unity certainly obsesses with this blog.

James Eterno said...

10:47 if you look at the election returns, the majority of the American electorate voted against Trump.

Anonymous said...

That doesn't include the 4 million mail in ballots from the military that traditionally go 80% republican. They have not even been opened.

Anonymous said...

James (10:57)

Randi needs to smarten up and to avoid comments sure to harden opposition to her cause.

"10:47 if you look at the election returns, the majority of the American electorate voted against Trump."

The electoral count was 306-232. Not very close at all. The popular vote (when all the ballots are counted) is completely irrelevant as all the grownups know. And schoolkids too. Citing the recent popular vote as evidence of something significant makes the left look particularly silly and out of touch. And pushes more and more grownups into the Republican ranks.

Thankfully the oddball protests have died down. Nothing tells undecideds to go Republican more than the sight of Black Lives Matter, Occupy Wall Streeters, and confused and crying millennials marching (and rioting) in our streets after a fair election. Trump would win even bigger if the election was held today.

James Eterno said...

Electoral College is an outdated affront to democracy that flies in the face of one man=one vote.It was put in to allow the slaveocracy a better chance to win elections and 8 out of the first 9 went to Virginians. You know that 3/5 nonsense for counting slaves for representation purposes from the original Constitution. I don't mind sounding out of touch demanding one person=one vote.

What I'm hearing is Hillary's popular vote margin is likely to grow because of the votes from California. Many in LA haven't been counted yet. You are right the popular vote doesn't matter as to who gets power but it does matter as far as legitimacy is concerned.

In my opinion, the electoral college only goes if the Democrats win the electoral college and Republicans win the popular vote because Republicans wouldn't stand for a Democratic president who lost the popular vote. Republicans really didn't tolerate the last two Democratic presidents that had a popular mandate. One was impeached for lying about oral sex and the other had his ideas and a supreme court nominee filibustered or merely threatened with a filibuster until he gave in but I don't really think his heart was in many liberal causes anyway. Republicans would make the presidency of a Democratic president who lost the popular vote a living hell. Democrats don't know how to fight that way.

Just my opinion.

Anonymous said...

Because its good Obama lets criminals out of jail early so they could kill, rob, and sell drugs to other black kids.

Anonymous said...

Trump himself is a noted critic of the Electoral College who called it "a disaster for a democracy” in 2012, and he told New York Times reporters Tuesday he would “rather do the popular vote” and was “never a fan of the Electoral College until now.”

“The popular vote would have been a lot easier,” Trump said, “but it’s a whole different campaign. I would have been in California, I would have been in Texas, Florida and New York, and we wouldn’t have gone anywhere else. Which is, I mean I’d rather do the popular vote.”

“But I think the popular vote would have been easier in a true sense because you’d go to a few places,” he added. “I think that’s the genius of the Electoral College. I was never a fan of the Electoral College until now.”

Anonymous said...

The Democrats and main stream media who backed Hillary were the first to brush off Bernie's point that super delegates and closed primaries were tilted against him. They told him that the rules were the rules.

2:20 I'm glad for the protesters. Do you really think that the Trump voters really care? They are so happy that they won.

10:47 LOL

Anonymous said...

Any lefty now bemoaning the long established electoral college process looks like a delusional whiner grasping at irrelevant straws.

Trumps comment at 4:36 is actually pretty insightful. Never thought I'd say that.

Any chance Ellison gets the nod for DNC head? That'll guarantee a Trump re-election although the MSNBC crew thinks it's positively brilliant.

James Eterno said...

Trump would have won the popular vote if it was a popular vote election? Not likely. The election was publicized nationally. A few Trump rallies probably would not have changed things in the big states where Democrats would have campaigned too.

Democrats would be at an advantage without the electoral college because the electoral college increases the value of the small states.

55 electors in California represent 38.8 million people.
3 electors in Wyoming represent 584,000 people. Do the math.

38,000,000 divided by 55 electoral votes = 1 elector representing 690,909 people in California.

584,000 divided by 3 = 1 elector representing 194,667 people in Wyoming.

One person=one vote. No way.

The small states have the Senate to block legislation already. They don't need the electoral college too.

James Eterno said...

There's my delusional whining.