Political Spending

As an educator who belongs to a union or professional organization: Do you know how your money is spent on political action?

Some Colorado teacher organizations contribute member funds to shadowy 527 groups and to partisan candidates and organizations. Click on one of the links below for more information on reported political campaign spending (all figures exclude money contributed to local school board and other nonpartisan candidates, or money contributed to issue committees — to inspect the campaign reports, visit the Secretary of State’s TRACER website):


2012: Colorado Education Association

The Colorado Education Association (CEA) and its affiliates, mostly through Every Member Option funds, have reported $1,233,810 in political contributions during the 2011-12 election cycle – including:

  • $307,691 to Democratic candidates and party organizations
  • A total of $601,000 to a wide array of 527 groups — with names like Coalition for Colorado’s Future, Colorado Accountable Government Alliance, and Community Information Project — to support “progressive” political causes or to attack candidates
  • $1,000 to Republican candidates and party organizations — that’s 1 dollar to Republicans for every 307 dollars given directly to Democrats

2012: American Federation of Teachers Colorado

The American Federation of Teachers (AFT) Colorado has reported $62,097 in political contributions during the current election cycle – including $60,450 to Democratic candidates and party organizations, and $0 to Republicans.


2010: Colorado Education Association

The Colorado Education Association (CEA) and its affiliates, mostly through Every Member Option funds, have reported $1,398,935 in political contributions during the 2009-10 election cycle – including:

  • $351,560 to Democratic candidates and party organizations
  • $252,500 to the 527 group Accountability for Colorado to attack political candidates — a group denounced by candidates in both parties and by Denver Post columnist Vince Carroll for maliciously distorting the truth
  • Another $793,375 to a wide array of 527 groups — with names like 21st Century Colorado, Colorado Alliance of Working Families, and The Neighborhood Group — to support “progressive” political causes or to attack candidates
  • $1,500 to Republican candidates and party organizations — that’s 1 dollar to Republicans for every 235 dollars given directly to Democrats

Note: The above figures do not include member dues used for $1.9 million in independent expenditures by the National Education Association on radio and television ads attacking Colorado U.S. Senate candidate Ken Buck. (Unlike the CEA and local political funds, these NEA political funds are not available for refund.)

2010: American Federation of Teachers Colorado

The American Federation of Teachers (AFT) Colorado has reported $122,250 in political contributions during the current election cycle – including $68,980 to Democratic candidates and party organizations, $5,000 to Accountability for Colorado (known for its deceptive, malicious attack ads) and $0 to Republicans.


2008: Colorado Education Association

The Colorado Education Association (CEA) and its affiliates, mostly through Every Member Option funds, have reported $1,000,585 in political contributions during the 2007-08 election cycle – including:

  • $452,360 to Democratic candidates and party organizations
  • $263,500 to the 527 group Accountability for Colorado to support political candidates — Accountability for Colorado is also funded by liberal billionaires from the “Gang of Four”
  • $210,000 to the 527 group Colorado Citizens’ Coalition to support “progressive” political candidates
  • $9,250 to Republican candidates and party organizations — that’s 1 dollar to Republicans for every 49 dollars to Democrats

Note: This does not include $4,657,810 contributed to the issue committee Protect Colorado’s Future and $1,600,000 to the issue committee Coloradans for Middle Class Relief to oppose three Colorado state ballot initiatives.

2008: American Federation of Teachers Colorado

The American Federation of Teachers (AFT) Colorado has reported $60,275 in political contributions during the current election cycle – including $40,275 to Democratic candidates and party organizations and $0 to Republicans.


2006: Colorado Education Association

For the 2006 election cycle, the Colorado Education Association (CEA) and its affiliates, mostly through Every Member Option funds, reported contributing by far the most money to political campaigns – $1,676,234 – including:

2006: American Federation of Teachers Colorado

The American Federation of Teachers (AFT) Colorado also reported $63,850 in 2006 political contributions, including:

  • $24,000 to Democratic candidates and party organizations (including $10,000 to Bill Ritter’s campaign)
  • $10,000 to the liberal 527 group Citizens for Colorado

Zero Dollars For Political Action

The following organizations do NOT have committees to fund political action:

Note: Information collected and verified from Colorado Secretary of State and Internal Revenue Service reports.