Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Jim Callaghan Says Weingarten Suspended Him Without Pay When He Circulated Pro-Obama information in 2008

Jim Callaghan, former NY Teacher ace investigator commented at NYC Public School Parents on this post:
Jim writes with some irony here, given that I bet lots of teachers probably would have preferred Hillary and in retrospect think Randi was right, but I'll let you draw your own conclusions:
Is Randi Weingarten of the American Federation of Teachers going to lend Obama a hand like she did in 2008?

She suspended me for two days without pay on Election Day, 2008, because I had distributed a pro-Obama article to about 100 United Federation of Teachers staffers via email- something I and others routinely did.

The article was written by Larry Hanley, now president of the Amalgamated Transit Union in D.C. and was about why whites should not be afraid to vote for Obama. He based his piece on the 1989 Dinkins for Mayor campaign, which I co-managed on Staten Island. We got a mainly white union Local to endorse DInkins and to hit the streets for him.

Hanley called me "one of the keenest minds in New York City."

I distributed because it had been part of my job to be on the lookout for such press clips and also because several of my co-workers said they were sending it to their undecided friends in toss up states. One founder of the union (from 1960) emailed me a letter of praise.

Weingarten, who was still bitter that Obama defeated Hillary Clinton, hit the roof and ordered five of her top bosses to call me to a two-hour meeting on Election Day to suspend me -all without due process that Weingarten is always whining about (for teachers -not her staff).

Weingarten also prevented her 150,000 members from voting on the 2008 race.
She had internal polling showing that Obama was the clear favorite but she announced the UFT endorsement before any member voted!

The members never had a chance.

My suspension was the FIRST time in the history of the union that a staffer was punished for doing his/her job about press clips or for letting UFT officers read something about a UFT- endorsed candidate.

She did the same thing to other black candiates: Bill Thompson for mayor in 2009; (she sat out the Bloomberg-Thompson race because he allegedly told her he was going to use public monies to bribe her with two, four per cent raises in return for her silence. Four years later, the members are still waiting for the raises.

She knifed state comptroller Carl McCall for New York governor (she endorsed Pataki, the right wing Republican) and Latino Freddy Ferrer for mayor in 2001- the clear choice of the membership after he received a rousing standing ovation from 20,000 members at Madsion Square Garden. She, not the members, backed her close friend City Controller Alan Hevesi- who is now in jail for looting a pension fun.
Weingarten also fired four consecutive black female writers; one of them won an NLRB case, was awarded $150,000 and got her job back. Weingarten was trying to break the union.

She also admitted to a group of UFT leaders that she had passed over a black man, Ron Davis, "too many times" for press secretary.
-Jim Callaghan
The opinions expressed on EdNotesOnline are solely those of Norm Scott and are not to be taken as official positions (though Unity Caucus/New Action slugs will try to paint them that way) of any of the groups or organizations Norm works with: ICE, GEM, MORE, Change the Stakes, NYCORE, FIRST Lego League NYC, Rockaway Theatre Co., Active Aging, The Wave, Aliens on Earth, etc.


  1. Whether Randi likes it or not, all arrows point to her.
    Sooner or later she will have to answer for what she has done

  2. Hillary Clinton would have been an ally for teachers something Obama is not, having stated that, I agree that the UFT delegate assembly was placed in a position of supporting Hillary while many delegates surely preferred Obama. Ron Davis was treated unfairly by Weingarten as he once told me she never forgave him for challenging her over an issue, he suspected her motives were to bring in her own people Dick Riley, Ron Davis is a great unionist and supporter of the members, Randi is a self serving opportunist who only promotes her agenda at the members expense. Mulgrew is her errand boy.


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