Sunday, April 28, 2019

UFT Election Overall and Retiree Data: Halabi Reports

Mulgrew had 37,000 votes and over 20,000 came from retirees, a warning shot across the bow of the UFT leadership and to some extent it explains their reaching out to former opposition people to stay on the Ex Bd by running on the Unity line. It won't do them much good as the UFT needs deep structural changes instead of cosmetic ones.
It was a bad election for the UFT. Vote totals were down across the board. My caucus, New Action, did particularly poorly
Unity did sweep the seats. But the group that has a monopoly on power has a growing inability to turn out votes, even after turning a popular chapter leader of a huge school, and a prominent Bernie Sanders supporter, with following.....
....Unity can claim a victory – they took an absolute majority of the high school votes for the first time since I’ve been a teacher… but with their second lowest vote total in years, perhaps ever.
I’ve seen speculation about who came in second overall. These results make me think Unity came in second – and those with an interest in promoting distance between the members and the union – our enemies – came in first...
..... Jonathan Halabi,
I've been posting the election data as Jonathan compiles it division by division. Below are the retiree votes -- which seem to have leveled off at around 21,000 with Unity getting almost 90% of the votes. First here are his rough overall totals. The numbers are pathetic for everyone.

Here is the rough skinny on the retiree vote:

Over 23,000 retirees voted, over the 21,000 cap, so each vote is prorated -- I'll take a shot in the dark - .95.

MORE/NA in 2016 got over 3000 retiree votes. This time running separately: MORE - 393, New Action - 763. NA has some legacy voters. And Solidarity was the big opposition winner here with 1361 - a curious result and more than a third of their totals.

[Solidarity also finished first in functionals. (MORE did a mailing to all OT/PTs and obviously didn't have a major effect but probably got them enough votes to finish 3rd.)]

Well we do know that the faction in control of MORE purged or isolated almost all of its retirees (Ageism), many with some influence over other retirees. Most did not vote for MORE and said so to the many who requested guidance on voting. So MORE finished last in the retiree vote.

Jonathan has posted on the other divisions and here are my links so far on the election in reverse order of publication:
Buried in these reports are more than an election analysis but a primer on how the UFT is structured and operates and how the election rules guarantee Unity victory. But also let me point out that of those non-retirees who do vote, the majority still favors Unity even if those absolute numbers may be small.

Consider this: 
Between the almost 70,000 teachers in elem, middle and high schools, Unity gets less than 10,000 and when you add the non-teaching functionals minus retirees the Unity in service vote is just over 16,000 while the opposition caucus totals of in-service are meaningless.

A key to creating a real challenge to Unity is not to worry about retiree votes but to reach the 70-75% of working teachers who do not care enough to vote -- not just a don't care attitude but a referendum of sorts on how relevant they see the union to their lives.

In some ways, the low level of interest in this election is a bigger threat than Janus, as Jonathan pointed out: These results make me think Unity came in second – and those with an interest in promoting distance between the members and the union – our enemies – came in first..

Oh, don't worry you Unity hacks and slugs, Unity will always control the UFT even if it becomes a cinder. But when you hear union officials argue that paying dues gives members the right to vote in union elections - well LOL.

The question is, Who will get to the 75% non-voters first? An effective opposition or the anti-union forces? This election pretty much decided that issue.

Just imagine of the non-voters decided to leave the UFT. And the mocking of MORE for playing a major role in creating the mess among the opposition continues - MORE Plans to Fail, Fails to Plan to Fail Sufficiently, and Comes in Second Among Working Teachers and declarations they were the biggest loser (actually New Action was and I saw a MORE leader actually say somewhere "We finished third" -- truly I fell off my bar stool. The MORE leadership's focus on building itself at the expense of building a real movement in the UFT will come back to bite everyone.

Retirees are the major key in assuring Unity control of the UFT in perpetuity. I've pretty much explained the process -- at large voting for most positions so that retiree vote can be decisive. 21,000 retirees voted this time, about a third, which is higher than the working teachers and functionals. Thus retirees made up over 45% of the total vote. Here is Jon's chart:


  1. Do you believe if you and Peter Z. were still in MORE that it would have benefited too greatly, especially with retirees? What about if Arthur and Mike were? The latter makes more sense, but voting for the contract and choosing to side with Unity are still bad decisions and who would regret losing them and coming out stronger next time, with or without them, and maybe even with a Norm strategy :)

  2. It is not about me or Peter but the entire ICE crew with their UFT experience and outreach -- Eterno alone brought in a lot of high school votes. So that is what MORE lost but they seem very happy to lose us troublemakers as they've branded us. The purging of ICE allowed the old TJC crew to lead MORE down this path - basically a bunch of newby teachers without much experience in the UFT. Behind the scenes some MORE have been in touch and told me I was right about the elections where I told them to either run with everyone in a serious manner or not run at all. But they are spinning this election as a win for the caucus.
    I wouldn't have run with Unity nor supported the contract but Arthur and Mike have context to what they did. As oppositionists they turned around and saw no opposition at their backs thus leaving them hanging. There was no way to get on the ex bd with the scattered opposition plus they saw horror stories in MORE that made Unity look comparatively good. Frankly, I also can say that Unity seems no less democratic. So they could have sat this out, run with New Action - how did that turn out? And they don't see Solidarity as a real winnable action and of course MORE was out of the question. They feel they can be of some use to members even in a limited way by being on the Ex Bd and Unity did not make them join or sign a loyalty oath which I think they would not have done -- even if a little bit -- a sign of something --- I think Unity needed them as much as they needed Unity -


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