With teachers facing layoffs, budget cuts and curtailment of collective bargaining rights, the nation’s largest education union made an early presidential endorsement for Barack Obama on Monday.
The National Education Association, representing 3.2 million members, voted to support Obama at the union’s annual convention in his hometown of Chicago. The vote allows the union to urge its members to support the president and provides the political and financial resources for Obama heading into the 2012 election.
It is the earliest endorsement ever by the union and comes as Republicans have yet to produce a frontrunner among several candidates to challenge Obama. The union usually selects endorsements in the summer leading up to the election, but officials wanted to come out with “early and strong support” for Obama because he shared a similar vision.