In a vote only a little less unlikely than the election of Donald Trump as US President, it was reported that four Unity Caucus members defied their caucus obligations to vote for Norm Scott for a seat on the UFT Executive Board. ... James Eterno, ICE blog, MULTIPLE UNITY CAUCUS MEMBERS VOTE FOR NORM SCOTT
Still, I Blow a Kiss to My Unity Caucus Slugs - er - Fans (all 4 of them).
I was shocked this past Monday to discover that you can lose an election by the popular vote. Why, no electoral college for this one? Did we get returns from Wisconsin yet?
As reported by Arthur Goldstein in his report of last Monday's UFT Exec Board meeting:
Election results for Exec. Board functional chapter opening:
- Nancy Barr 64 votes Norm Scott 10.
Eterno speculates as to why the Unity defections:
- Unity members were impressed by Mike Schirtzer's speech on behalf of Norm
- Multiple Unity people wanted to actually make a protest point.
- The Unity candidate was someone who was unpopular
- They like that the jokes are back in Norm's Ed Notes.
Actually, if you read some of the comments on James' post from what seems to be Unity insiders, there may be some internal strife but never enough to have much of an impact.
If they had let me make a speech I would have said "Give me more sandwich choices at EB dinners or give me death."
When Mike Schirtzer nominated me for the position a few weeks ago and the boychik made such a fab speech, he promised me I would win - win 7 votes from the MORE/New Action EB members. I told him I wasn't even sure I would get those votes.
So on Monday I decided not to go to the meeting to suffer da agony of de feet. I have enough problems walking.
Well, James Eterno thinks I made history by getting 4 Unity votes (one of the MOREs was not there so I had 6, not 7 votes from our EB people).
Since it was a secret ballot, UFT security has been taking fingerprints off the defector ballots to determine who they were. But they won't find anything.
My Unity defector posse (sorry Lebron James) knows enough to vote while wearing gloves.
Below is James' entire post.
We know there was Unity dissent since there were only six opposition members who were in attendance at Monday's meeting and Norm received 10 votes. That means four from Unity had to have voted for Norm. Four Unity votes for an opposition member is unprecedented. The Unity candidate still easily won but elections are about expectations and Norm was expected to get six votes. He wildly exceeded expectations.
I was a member of the Executive Board representing the High School Division for a decade. In that time there were plenty of interim elections to replace Officers, including the President, and Executive Board members who retired, moved on to the AFT or passed away. Over the twenty years I have been following the Executive Board, only once can I recall a single Unity Caucus member not voting for the Unity candidate. It was in 1997, my first year on the Board. It was such a rare event that then President Sandy Feldman noted from the chair that the vote crossed caucus lines.
One Unity member in two decades that I know of crossed party lines to vote for someone in the opposition until Monday night. Norm in one election quadrupled twenty years worth of vote totals for opposition candidates.
Maybe Unity members were impressed by Mike Schirtzer's speech on behalf of Norm or perhaps multiple Unity people wanted to actually make a protest point. Then again it is possible that the Unity candidate was someone who was unpopular or maybe four of them like that the jokes are back in Norm's Ed Notes.
Before anyone thinks there is a real crack in the Unity machine, let us remember this was a secret ballot election so we will never know, unless they come out and say, who the Unity dissidents were. They are about as likely to admit they voted for Norm as they are to split a mega-millions jackpot on Saturday. Then again, these are strange times for sure so perhaps we will find out.
Anyway, congratulations Norm on a job well done! You won over more Unity people than I ever did.