Colorado Teachers Unions Give 99.8 Percent of Political Funds to Democrats

Author: bdegrow  //  Category: Political Contributions

Right now, it’s the heart of political season. That means some teacher organizations — the Colorado Education Association (CEA) and American Federation of Teachers (AFT) — are actively involved in contributing member funds to various campaigns. (Other teacher organizations do not collect or distribute member money for political contributions.) As Ed News Colorado reports today with a dog bites man headline: “Union contributions mount up.”

Through September 1, here’s an updated overview of how the two unions have spent on political action for the current 2010 election cycle (all information provided by reports on the Colorado Secretary of State’s campaign finance database). First, CEA and its local affiliates have given:

  • $494,015 to progressive and Democratic 527 and 501c4 political action groups
  • $260,110 to Democratic candidates and party organizations
  • $1,500 to a Republican organization (but no candidates) — That’s one dollar to Republicans for every 173 dollars to Democrats

And now the AFT:

  • $63,980 to progressive and Democratic 527 and 501c4 political action groups
  • $50,000 to Democratic candidates and party organizations
  • $0 to Republicans

Added together, Colorado teachers unions have contributed 99.8 percent of their combined political spending for 2010 to one party: the Democrats. Somehow, I’m guessing that CEA and AFT members won’t vote this year in quite the same proportion. Where’s the balance?

Check out our political contributions page for some context, to see how imbalanced teachers union political giving is even by recent historical standards.

September Main Time Colorado School Employees Can Opt Out of Union Dues or Non-Member Fees

Author: bdegrow  //  Category: Membership Revocations

September has arrived. For teachers and other employees in many Colorado schools, the busy season continues. But today also marks the beginning of the short time frame in which union members in several school districts can choose to opt out of a year’s worth of union dues (and in a few cases — as our recent video about Colorado teachers unions pointed out — for non-union members to opt out of paying hundreds of dollars in union fees).

Some districts allow teachers and other employees to opt in or out of unions and other membership organizations at any time. In other districts, though, opt-out periods are limited to as little as 7 days or as much as 3 months. Here are the school districts where opt-out periods begin today, with procedures for those who choose to follow them, as well as the official deadline: Read more…