Chicago Teachers Union boss Karen Lewis has decided to keep her day job and run for mayor against incumbent Rahm Emanuel—a controversial decision for someone who, it turns out, is in the top 1% of earners yet in the past had railed against “the rich.”
But Lewis’ woes don’t stop at such hypocrisy. On September 16th Illinois chapter of Democrats for Education Reform (DEFR), an organization aligned with Emanuel, called on Lewis to step down from the CTU is she plans to run for mayor:
With a $40,000 contribution to her mayoral campaign, President Lewis has made it clear she is running for Mayor, but she has also said that she will force negotiations over a new teacher’s contract this year,” DFER-IL State Director Rebeca Nieves-Huffman said. “Doing both would present nothing short of a conflict of interest. Chicagoans wouldn’t know whether President Lewis was representing her members, her political interests, or if she's using the negotiations merely as an extension of her campaign. If Karen Lewis truly cares about representing the interests of all Chicagoans, she should step down from her role as head of the CTU as she pursues a campaign for mayor.”
A poll conducted by DFER-Illinois found that 59% of respondents agreed that if Lewis runs for mayor, she should step down to avoid conflicts of interest.
Courtesy of Daniel Greenfield, we are reminded of the ugly fact that almost half of Chicago is illiterate.
According to the White House website, 47 percent of Windy City residents cannot read. Additionally, 79 percent of its 8th graders are not proficient in reading and 80 percent are not proficient in math.
There are many reasons for these pathetic numbers. …But since teachers are the most important factor in student learning and because school is compulsory in Chicago (and everywhere else in the U.S.), one really must look there for the problem. (Just as a side note – before parents were forced to send their kids to public schools, the U.S. had a literacy rate of about 90 percent.)
Because many Chicago public schools (CPS) are so bad, they are being abandoned. Due to declining enrollment, 50 schools closed in 2013 and probably a lot more should have been shuttered.
Enter Karen Lewis. The president of the powerful Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) decided to get busy.
Bombastic as always, she came out swinging. Never once does she mention that the unionized schools themselves – with all the attendant anti-child work rules – could be at fault. Nowhere does she acknowledge that her union’s virulent anti-choice position, which forces kids to stay in lousy schools, could be part of the problem. Instead she uses diversionary tactics.
Sand recounts how Lewsi has blamed such pitiful performance on rich white people, racism, Teach for America, right-wing bloggers, and the lists goes on and on. Yet as Sand continues:
As union president, Chicagoans have had no choice but to put up with Karen Lewis. But should she run for mayor in 2015, they will indeed have a say. And in August, a Chicago Tribune poll showed that she was running 4 percentage points (43-39) ahead of Rahm Emmanuel.
Unfortunately, the poll didn’t determine the percentage of her voters who are illiterate.