Thursday, June 27, 2019

#RedforEd Teachers in Maine to Lobby for Right to Strike

The #RedforEd movement is now targeting the state of Maine, where teachers plan to converge on the state capital of Augusta on April 17 to support the passage of a bill that would grant them the right to strike.

The Action Network described the planning for the event, which is sponsored by the Maine Education Association:

On Wednesday April 17, Maine educators will head to the State House to speak out to support their right to use their voices for the schools their students deserve. Teachers, support staff, retired educators, parents and community members will be in Augusta asking lawmakers to vote to support LD 900, a bill that expands the rights of public employees under the Maine labor laws. The bill would allow public employees, including educators, to strike, if and when they feel they need to make their voices heard. It is currently against the law in Maine for public employees to strike

“Our bill to give school employees the right to strike will be scheduled for a public hearing on Wednesday, April 17 in the Labor Committee,” the Maine Education Association website states:

MEA’s #RedforEd Day at the State House is a perfect opportunity to show our collective strength and push for legislation that will directly impact our students, schools and professions. We are planning many events that day and hope to have a sea of red at the State House.

Currently, many states, including California, provide teachers with the right to strike, while in many other states, including Tennessee, it is illegal for teachers to strike.

Teachers’ unions and free market advocates disagree on exactly how many states prohibit teachers from striking legally.

Education Weeknotes that “the National Right to Work Foundation says 27 states have right to work laws ‘for the private and/or public sector,’ while AFSCME says ’26 states prohibit fair-share fees or public-sector collective bargaining completely.'”

As Breitbart News reported last month at the beginning of this series:

A well-funded and subversive leftist movement of teachers in the United States threatens to tilt the political balance nationwide in the direction of Democrats across the country as Republicans barely hang on in key states that they need to hold for President Donald Trump to win re-election and for Republicans to have a shot at retaking the House and holding onto their Senate majority.

This teachers union effort, called #RedforEd, has its roots in the very same socialism that President Trump vowed in his 2019 State of the Union address to stop, and it began in its current form in early 2018 in a far-flung corner of the country before spreading nationally. Its stated goals–higher teacher pay and better education conditions–are overshadowed by a more malevolent political agenda: a leftist Democrat uprising designed to flip purple or red states to blue, using the might of a significant part of the education system as its lever.

In the 2016 presidential election, Maine gave three electoral college votes to Hillary Clinton and one to Donald Trump. Maine is just one of two states, the other being Nebraska, in which electoral college votes are not cast on a “winner-take-all basis.”

Maine gives two electoral college votes to the winner of the statewide vote and one electoral college vote to the winner in each of the state’s two congressional districts.

In 2016, Hillary Clinton won the statewide vote by a 53 percent to 47 percent margin and won the votes in the Second Congressional District by a 54 percent to 46 percent margin. Donald Trump won the votes in the First Congressional District by a 52 percent to 48 percent margin.

The 2020 outlook in Maine is clouded by the recent adoption of the controversial “ranked voting” system in which the person who earns the most votes in a federal election could actually lose the election due to a complicated ranking system in races with more than two candidates.

As Breitbart News reported in December:

Secretary of State [Matt] Dunlap, a Democrat, declared Democrat Jared Golden the winner of the election on November 15, despite the fact that Rep. Bruce Poliquin (R-ME-02) received 2,632 more votes than Golden on election day, a consequence of the state’s implementation of a controversial “rank voting” system.

Thanks to a 2016 referendum that was placed on the state ballot and was passed due to the financial support of liberal Texas billionaire John Arnold, Maine’s 2018 federal election was the first time in American history that candidates were federal offices were selected using a complex “rank voting system.”

Since a Maine judge had earlier ruled that the “rank voting system” passed by voters in 2016 and affirmed by voters in June 2018 violated the Maine Constitution, state offices were selected by the traditional voting system used in the rest of the country–winners were determined by who received the most votes.

Federal offices–in this case the Senate race that incumbent Sen. Angus King (I-ME) easily won, and the state’s two seats in the U.S. House of Representatives–were decided by the complex “rank voting” system, as implemented by the Democrat Secretary of State, using a proprietary computer algorithm provided to the state by an outside vendor

Breitbart News reported on Thursday:
Maine lawmakers are considering legislation that would expand their current ranked-choice voting system to presidential elections. The bill, which is currently being debated in the state house and had its first public hearing on Wednesday, would allow voters to cast a ballot for a preferred candidate and rank the additional candidates on the ballot in order of their choosing in presidential primary and general elections.
Should the Maine Education Association succeed in persuading the Maine state legislature to pass legislation granting teachers the right to strike, the state’s Democrat Gov. Janet Mills is expected to sign it into law.If Maine teachers secure the legal right to strike, it could become a significant political weapon with the potential to impact the outcome of the 2020 presidential election in the state.

Michael Patrick Leahy

More From: Michael Patrick Leahy
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