Let's face facts - If UFC were to win it all, it would be by a thin margin. And I'd bet my pension that Unity would protest and yell "Stop the steal." They are Republicans after all. Mitch Mulgrew.
In part 1 (Handicapping the 2022 UFT Election: Can United for Change Win? Part 1 - UFC Unique Coalition, Unity on the Attack, Will UFC Hold Together?) I talked about the UFC Coalition and how its every nature makes the oppo in this election different and also how the Unity campaign is different as an offset.
I believe this election can range from slam dunk 80% win for Unity and nothing for UFC to a slim win for UFC, if not overall, then in certain divisions. Keys are turnout and GOTV efforts, both weak in the past. Retirees have the biggest turnout -- like 45% of the total voters, while working teachers are more like 25% or less. If both go up significantly it favors UFC. Unity knows that and will make GOTV claims but they really want low turnout. They actually brag that the 25% is actually great for union elections, ignoring that in Chicago, with in school voting, they get 60% turnout. And don't forget -- they turned down all UFC attempts to use electronic voting.
I'd say anything over 70% for Unity is a win in the broader sense, even if UFC wins some Ex Bd seats -- especially as you go down Jon's list of Unity ills. If people ignore that in today's world, what would it take?
For people who follow elections, UFT elections are usually a snore. 12 officers, 95 executive board seats, 750 delegates, none of these are a contest. There is usually a tussle over the last 7 executive board seats. The high school seats. I held one of them for 11 years. But this year? At least those 7 seats in play, with a realistic chance for more, and an outside chance for the whole ball of wax. Observers and players alike are speculating about the margin. If Unity somehow loses votes from 2019 (83%), but stays at their 2016 level (76%), that will look like a huge victory for them. But I don’t think that is likely.
Will Unity lose some votes, or will they lose a lot of votes? Will they take a small hit but still sail in with 72%? If that happens, there’s no mandate for change. UFT members who want something different will be disappointed. Some Unity members among them. Of course UFC might win, and we should talk about that, a different day. But if the votes come out and Unity wins, but takes a big hit on the numbers – and that’s what I think will happen, will that send a clear message? Will Unity adjust some of its policies? Will they find a new leader?
There are people in Unity who recognize that and this time, as Jon points out, Unity is taking this election very seriously - insiders tell me they expect to win it all - including the high schools. They are running a heavy campaign and let's not ignore that campaigns do work if done right. How they are playing out in the schools is something beyond me.
And of course UFC is running a heavy, more far reaching campaign than I've seen - ever. Jonathan's view:
Jon goes on to address the issues that scare Unity but I think that this time doesn't compare to the 2016 coalition which was MORE/NA while Solidarity was out there very vocally even if not with slate status. And there was still some pushback against NAC which had been in coalition with Unity for a decade.
Broad Coalition: United for Change,
the opposition coalition, is bigger and broader than anything we’ve
seen in these last two decades. Maybe the coalitions is Unity’s biggest
problem? You could make that argument. But I don’t think so. We had a pretty big coalition in 2016, and did win the high school division, but it wasn’t scary for Unity the way today is.
Plus the many new players who had never been involved before, some of them former Unity supporters.
The UFC coalition ranges from right of center to far left.
And I love how some people have emerged and how some have grown. Some serious talent in MORE, Solidarity (I brag all the time about how amazing Lydia has been) and New Action and Daniel Alicea with his outreach group.
I will dive deeper into the particulars of the election in Part 3-infinity where I will review the divisions and the potential outcomes for each.