Union recommends Democrats to its conservative members

EAST LANSING, Mich. — The Michigan Education Association reported in October that a large percentage of teachers nationwide consider themselves "conservative," while also recommending in the same publication that teachers vote for Democrats in nearly all political races, according to Michigan Capitol Confidential.

The October issue of The Voice noted that a National Education Association survey in 2005-2006 found that 45 percent of teachers under age 30, and 63 percent between the ages of 40 and 49, classified themselves as "conservative," Michigan Capitol Confidential reported.

The same issue endorsed 111 Democrats in 114 political races, according to Capitol Confidential. MEA President Iris Salters told Michigan Capitol Confidential that local committees recommend candidates for endorsement.

"What they try to do is identify the person that best will support public education and school employees," Salters told Michigan Capitol Confidential. Since that interview, the MEA has added three Republicans to its endorsement list, for a total of six, according to a separate Michigan Capitol Confidential report.

State House Rep. Tom McMillin, R-Rochester Hills, whom the MEA has not endorsed, told Capitol Confidential that it was "clear the MEA is very partisan."

The Mackinac Center for Public Policy publishes Michigan Capitol Confidential and Michigan Education Digest.

Michigan Capitol Confidential, "Teacher Union Doubles Republican Count on Recommended List," Oct. 23, 2010

Michigan Capitol Confidential, "MEA Concedes Large Percentage of 'Conservative' Teachers, Endorses 97% Democrats," Oct. 18, 2010

Michigan Education Report, "Tracking union money in local school board elections," Nov. 14, 2007