American Federation of Teachers
March 22, 2020

AFT endorses Joe Biden as Democratic nominee for president

Acting on a clear mandate from the AFT’s membership, the AFT executive council passed a resolution endorsing Vice President Joe Biden for president. After more than a year of member engagement on the endorsement process—with more than 300,000 AFT members nationwide participating in candidate events, town halls, polls, regional conferences and other efforts—new membership polls show strong support for Biden.

Dedicated to a transparent process that focuses on the needs of AFT members and the communities they serve, the AFT’s endorsement decision has been guided by three criteria: selecting a candidate who shares the union’s values, who has the support of our members, and who can ultimately defeat President Trump in November. Biden—a long-term partner of the AFT whose wife, Jill Biden, is an educator and whose family through tragedy has come to revere healthcare professionals—meets those criteria.

Several weeks ago, the AFT determined that three candidates—Biden, Sanders and Warren—shared our values. Over the past several days, membership polls revealed that a majority of members (60 percent) in every AFT constituency now support Biden, who leads his nearest competitor by a 2-to-1 ratio. Seventy-five percent of the Democratic membership supports the AFT making an endorsement in the primary. And in recent weeks, Biden has won an impressive lead in the delegate count. With 60 percent of delegates already apportioned, he has 1,180 delegates of the 1,991 needed to secure the nomination.

A real leader in a time of real need

The decision to endorse now, in the midst of a global pandemic, was driven by the urgent need for a leader with courage and compassion.

“Before the COVID-19 epidemic, the 2020 election was about the soul of our country. Now it’s about our soul, our safety, our health, our security and our economic well-being,” says AFT President Randi Weingarten. “Joe Biden is the experienced and empathic leader our country needs right now. His character was forged getting up and going to work every day and trying to make life better for his family, facing the ups and downs so many of us face; it was tested by unspeakable loss and grief in life; and it was nurtured through public service, a love of people and the belief in the dignity of every human.”

AFT for Biden logo white backgroundHighlighting the ways Biden’s priorities match those of the AFT, Weingarten continues: “Biden is with us on investing in public education; making college a reality for everyone; fixing the broken Public Service Loan Forgiveness program; making healthcare a human right, not a privilege for the wealthy; prioritizing clean energy and environmental justice; and building an economy that respects the value of workers’ voices. His whole career has been devoted to building a pathway to the middle class for the millions of people facing an affordability crisis daily. It’s time to give him the chance to do that as president.”

Conversations among AFT leaders have focused on the urgency of this moment, when the coronavirus pandemic has gripped the nation and revealed glaring weaknesses in the current president’s judgment and leadership ability.

“In this moment of worldwide crisis, the contrast with Trump is clear,” says Weingarten. “Our country is navigating the greatest challenge we have battled in generations, and it is essential that we rally around a candidate who can show courage, conviction and compassion in the face of uncertainty.

“Throughout this national emergency, the president and his administration have failed to secure testing and personal protective equipment to safeguard our frontline healthcare providers; have attempted to conceal the severity of the virus and downplay the public health risks; and have refused to deploy the full arsenal of the federal government’s resources, leaving the difficult work of leadership to our nation’s governors. Now more than ever, we need a standard-bearer who is actually looking out for us, and who has a proven track record of steering the country successfully through economic and social upheaval.”

Throughout the campaign season, beginning more than a year ago, Weingarten has directly interacted with candidates, swinging their focus to issues most important to AFT members, including public education, public healthcare, working families and the public good. The union also created countless opportunities for members to interact with candidates at town hall meetings, to discuss their campaigns at debate watch parties, conferences and campaign gatherings, and to register their own opinions and preferences on membership surveys. In February, the AFT urged members to throw their support behind any one of the three candidates who had surfaced as hewing closest to union values: Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren.

“The ‘how’ a nominee was selected was as important as the ‘who,’” says Weingarten, stressing that no one should be left on the sidelines during an election that is widely considered to be the most important of our lifetimes.

With all the pieces in place, and the urgency of replacing Donald Trump driven by deep concern over the safety of our nation, the ‘how’ has come to selecting ‘who,’ says Weingarten: “Given everything that is going on, that person now is Joe Biden.”

A long-term partner who listens

Shortly after the AFT executive council voted to endorse Biden, council members were surprised and heartened to have Joe and Jill Biden join the council’s virtual meeting. By phone, the Bidens offered their heartfelt thanks and reinforced their commitment to AFT members and the children, families and communities they uplift. Getting right to the matter at hand, Vice President Biden declared that, “I am going to be a president who leads with science and who listens to experts.” Touching on an important update to his education policy platform(link is external), Biden emphasized that college should be tuition-free for families that earn less than $125,000 per year. Jill Biden, a lifelong educator, also expressed her thanks and shared her vision, saying “What makes this nation great is the people who come together with kindness and courage to make it great.”

Weingarten reminded Biden of the good work they had done together during the Obama administration, thanking him for listening and acting on critical issues like the improper use of student test scores in teacher evaluations. Summing up what she has heard from countless members, Weingarten expressed the AFT’s commitment to Vice President Biden becoming President Biden, saying “With your courage, conviction, compassion and empathy, you will lead this country in a better direction. We are now Team Biden!”

[Virginia Myers, AFT Media Affairs]

AFT Resolution

AFT Endorsement of Joe Biden as the Democratic Nominee for President of the United States

WHEREAS, the American Federation of Teachers has spent more than a year engaging members and affiliates in the most intensive, inclusive, transparent and engaging presidential endorsement process in our history and has seen unprecedented engagement by members; and

WHEREAS, the AFT’s endorsement decision in the presidential primary has been guided by three essential criteria: a candidate who shares our values, a candidate who has the support of our members, and a candidate who can defeat President Trump. And in the more than 300,000 conversations we have had, our members believed when the time came, we would unify as a national union behind one candidate; and

WHEREAS, in February, the AFT’s executive council concluded that three candidates shared our values and had a path to winning the nomination—Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren—and encouraged our members to actively support any or all of them; and

WHEREAS, since that point, our members, like Democrats across the nation, have coalesced around Biden, who now has clear majority support of our members across all constituencies; and

WHEREAS, with nearly 60 percent of the delegates allocated, Biden has a sizable lead and has proven he has the ability to attract voters and build a coalition to win not just the primary but also the general election; and

WHEREAS, this election has taken on an increasing urgency since the actual voting has begun. The world, including the United States, is facing a global pandemic threatening the health, well-being and economic security of our members, our communities and our nation. The dire need for personal protective equipment for our essential personnel is a case in point, which is why now more than ever we need to unite behind a strong, effective, empathic leader who can help families and lead a fractured nation. A leader who offers a stark contrast to the incompetent, ineffective and narcissistic actions of Trump, who even in these times of crisis continues to only focus on what is good for himself at the expense of the American people; and

WHEREAS, the economic harm caused by COVID-19 will be particularly devastating to working families. Even before the pandemic hit, nearly 40 percent of Americans said they couldn’t cover a $400 emergency expense. Just as Franklin D. Roosevelt after Herbert Hoover and the Great Depression and Barack Obama and Biden after George W. Bush and the Great Recession, this moment calls for a Democratic president who has the competence and compassion to not just bring us out of the depths of economic ruin but also rewrite the rules so working families thrive and heal our nation:

RESOLVED, that the American Federation of Teachers endorses Joe Biden to be the Democratic nominee for president of the United States as the candidate who shares our values, has the support of our members and has the path to the nomination and to the presidency. Biden has proven he is best able to bring the necessary coalition of Americans together to defeat Trump, handle this pandemic and its aftermath, and create a better life and future for all Americans; and

RESOLVED, that AFT members have a long history with Biden and know him as someone whose life experiences crafted a resilient, competent, compassionate and honest leader with an unbending optimism and commitment to working people. Biden has spent his entire career championing the values of strong public schools and higher education; healthcare and college as rights not privileges; and labor and civil rights. He believes in the dignity of every person and the importance of the labor movement. He was a trusted vice president, at home and abroad, and he, with President Obama, helped America get through a terrible recession. He is the leader we need in this moment; and

RESOLVED, that Biden’s proposals demonstrate his deep belief in the promise and purpose of public education, higher education and the labor movement. He understands healthcare is a right, not a privilege, and was instrumental in the passage of the Affordable Care Act. He championed the Violence Against Women Act and led the administration’s fight for marriage equality. Biden’s healthcare plans will make healthcare more affordable by offering a public option for families and reigning in drug companies to make medicine affordable. He will fight to make it easier for workers who choose to unionize to do so and has adopted plans to reform bankruptcy laws for struggling families. He will strengthen and invest in public schools, including by tripling funding for Title I, fully funding the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, expanding community schools, investing in school infrastructure and doubling the number of psychologists, guidance counselors, nurses, social workers and other health professionals in our schools; limit testing; support educators; and invest in higher education and make college affordable, including by establishing a “Title I for postsecondary education,” investing in public colleges and universities and historically black colleges and universities, strengthening Public Service Loan Forgiveness and income-based repayment, and making public colleges and universities free for most families. These plans stand in stark contrast to the Betsy DeVos agenda to defund and destroy public education. Biden’s education plans are informed by his wife, Jill, who has been a teacher her entire career, even while Biden served as vice president; and

RESOLVED, that the AFT will use our endorsement, our appointment to the platform committee, and our relationship with the Biden campaign to strengthen both the national Democratic platform and the policy positions of the eventual Democratic nominee in the way AFT members envision; and

RESOLVED, that the AFT commits to continuing our unprecedented level of engagement to ensure nobody is on the sidelines in the November elections and that we do everything in our power to help Biden win the democratic nomination and then elect him president.

Please note that a newer resolution, or portion of a resolution, may have superseded an earlier resolution on the same subject. As a result, with the exception of resolutions adopted at our most recent AFT convention, resolutions do not necessarily reflect current AFT policies.

ed. note: On Feb. 29, 2020 AFT President Randi Weingarten, in her personal capacity, endorsed Sen. Elizabeth Warren.

American Federation of Teachers
For Release: Thursday, February 20, 2020
Contact: Oriana Kori

American Federation of Teachers Passes Resolution to Encourage Support for 3 of the 2020 Democratic Primary Candidates

WASHINGTON—In a telephone town hall on Thursday night with thousands of American Federation of Teachers members and leaders who have been actively engaged in the union’s 2020 presidential endorsement process, AFT President Randi Weingarten, Scranton (Pa.) Federation of Teachers President Rosemary Boland, AFT Vermont President Deb Snell and Boston Teachers Union President Jessica Tang discussed the next steps in the AFT’s plan for supporting candidates as the 2020 Democratic presidential primary continues to unfold.

Weingarten reported on this week’s meeting of the AFT executive council, including the passage of a resolution outlining the next steps in the AFT’s 2020 endorsement process. The board voted to step up what is already unprecedented member engagement in the upcoming election by encouraging locals and state affiliates to support, be actively involved with, or endorse the candidacies of Vice President Joe Biden, Sen. Bernie Sanders or Sen. Elizabeth Warren, ahead of the selection of more than 60 percent of the delegates by the end of March. The resolution signals to members and leaders that support for any of those three candidates is welcome at this stage of the process before the union makes a national endorsement.

This next phase of the union’s 2020 endorsement process follows record member engagement in the first stage of the presidential primary, with more than 300,000 members participating to date—including the public education forum in Pittsburgh that featured seven candidates, the 10 candidate town halls hosted with members around the country, numerous telephone town halls, several member surveys and polls, five regional meetings, and countless activities at the local and affiliate levels. Several AFT locals and state federations have already made candidate endorsements, as encouraged by the initial endorsement resolution(link is external), passed in March of 2019.

Weingarten said:

“We are fighting for working families and our communities to have the freedom to live, and a voice at work and in our democracy. Donald Trump has proven himself to be an existential threat to the values and aspirations of educators, healthcare professionals, public employees and the communities we serve every day. While several candidates in this race share our values, three in particular—Vice President Biden, Sen. Sanders and Sen. Warren have significant support within our membership. There is a real connection with these three candidates because of their record of working with us over the years on public education, higher education, healthcare, labor and civil rights.

“Given the stakes of this election, the enthusiasm among our membership to engage, and the nature of the democratic nomination process, our board felt strongly that until the AFT makes a national endorsement in the primary process or at the AFT convention, it is important that our affiliates, members and leaders, including the three national officers, be actively involved in supporting and helping Vice President Biden, Sen. Sanders and Sen. Warren. 

“It was clear that the time to take this action was now, before all the delegates are chosen and before all of the primaries are over, so that AFT members and leaders can help shape the race and the narrative, ensure our voices are heard, and ensure one of these three candidates emerges as the nominee. Because, make no mistake: We are in the fight of our lives—for a better life for our members and the communities we serve, to preserve our democracy, and to defeat Donald Trump. Ultimately, we must be unified and support the eventual Democratic nominee.”

Boland said:

“As a native of Scranton, Vice President Biden knows firsthand about the economic, educational and social issues that matter to our community. He has been a lifelong advocate for strong public schools, labor rights, and access to quality and affordable healthcare—issues important to our members, working families and the students we teach. I, and my members, aren’t just supporting the vice president because of his past record, but also because of his vision for the future—a vision that is focused on strengthening the middle class and providing opportunity for everyone. We are committed to turning out for Joe Biden ahead of Pennsylvania’s April 28 primary, and we resolve to do the same for whomever the eventual Democratic nominee is, too. The stakes are too high to sit on the sidelines.”

Snell said:

“AFT Vermont has proudly endorsed Sen. Bernie Sanders’ campaign for president, and our members in higher education and healthcare are already engaged in his movement to bring universal healthcare to every person in this country, and an affordable college education. Sen. Sanders has shown he has the vision, the momentum and the diversity of support necessary to enact bold policy changes that will undo the corrupting influence of corporate power on our economy, and allow working people to access the better-life issues we fight for every day: decent wages, a secure retirement, good healthcare and an opportunity for our families to get ahead. We are committed to helping Sen. Sanders win delegates, and also committed to supporting whichever Democrat ends up taking on Donald Trump in November.”

Tang said:

"Sen. Elizabeth Warren is the true visionary in this race for president: Her plans for big, structural change make her the clear choice for the Boston Teachers Union and AFT Massachusetts. Sen. Warren’s values are aligned with ours. We strongly support her plans for public education, immigration justice and building an economy that works for all by making it easier for workers in all sectors to join a union and by tackling our nation’s student debt crisis. She has stood with us every step of the way in our ongoing efforts to win the necessary funding and policies to strengthen public education for all, particularly for the students and communities with the greatest needs. This is a critical time for us to show leadership, so we’re proud to stand behind her during the Massachusetts Democratic presidential primary. We look forward to supporting her or whomever is elected as the eventual Democratic nominee.”


# # # #

The AFT represents 1.7 million pre-K through 12th-grade teachers; paraprofessionals and other school-related personnel; higher education faculty and professional staff; federal, state and local government employees; nurses and healthcare workers; and early childhood educators.


WHEREAS, one year ago, the American Federation of Teachers executive council adopted a resolution establishing the AFT’s 2020 presidential endorsement process, and, since that time, the AFT has conducted the most intensive, inclusive, transparent and engaging presidential endorsement process in its history; and

WHEREAS, unprecedented engagement has led to more than 300,000 members having participated in the endorsement process to date, including in the public education forum the AFT co-sponsored with union and community groups; 10 separate candidate town halls involving every constituency; five regional meetings with state and local leaders; and numerous telephone town halls, member surveys and polls; as well as state and local affiliates conducting their own programs of member engagement; and

WHEREAS, the following membership consensus has emerged:

1.    Donald Trump is an existential threat to the values and aspirations of our members and those we serve; 

2.    While several candidates share our values, three—Vice President Joe Biden, Sen. Bernie Sanders and Sen. Elizabeth Warren—share our values and have significant support within our membership; and

3.    In our quest for a better life for our members and the communities we serve, to preserve our democracy, and to defeat Trump, we must ultimately be unified and support the eventual Democratic nominee; and

WHEREAS, Vice President Biden, Sen. Sanders and Sen. Warren have a record of working with us over the years and standing with us on public education, higher education, healthcare, and labor and civil rights, and, as a result, they have received the highest levels of support of our members, including endorsements from AFT affiliates at the state and local levels, as well as AFT members running as delegates in support of their candidacies; and

WHEREAS, the majority of delegates will be allocated in the next two months, and it is critical that members, affiliates and leaders at the national, state and local levels continue to grow our engagement and ensure our collective voices are heard and influence the political dialogue; and

WHEREAS, Trump and his appointees, including Betsy DeVos, threaten our democracy, climate, public education, healthcare, public services, freedoms and way of life; and

WHEREAS, the stakes in this election require our solidarity; nobody can be on the sidelines, and the energy of educators, nurses and public service professionals must be supported, nurtured and activated in this election; and

WHEREAS, we are unified both to defeat Trump in the 2020 elections and to elect someone who will join us in fighting for these values:

RESOLVED, until the American Federation of Teachers decides to make a national endorsement in the primary process or at the AFT convention, the AFT urges the affiliates, members and leadership, including the three AFT national officers, to be actively involved in supporting and helping Vice President Biden, Sen. Sanders, and/or Sen. Warren.


Please note that a newer resolution, or portion of a resolution, may have superseded an earlier resolution on the same subject. As a result, with the exception of resolutions adopted at our most recent AFT convention, resolutions do not necessarily reflect current AFT policies.

American Federation of Teachers
For Release: Friday, November 15, 2019
Contact: Oriana Korin

Statement by American Federation of Teachers President on Local Affiliate Endorsements in 2020 Presidential Campaign

WASHINGTON—AFT President Randi Weingarten issued the following statement after the United Teachers Los Angeles House of Representatives voted to endorse Sen. Bernie Sanders for the Democratic nomination for president:

“The AFT fundamentally revamped our presidential endorsement process(link is external) this cycle, and in our first phase we have seen unprecedented engagement and empowerment of our 1.7 million members across 3,500 locals and 40 state federations. Our members have engaged with campaigns and candidates, asking questions about the issues that matter most to them, during our 10 candidate town halls and numerous other events and actions. This first phase of the process will culminate in a national candidate forum on public education, which we will host with our allies on Dec. 14 in Pittsburgh.

“As part of this AFT Votes endorsement process, we have enabled locals and state federations, if they choose, prior to any national endorsement, to endorse a candidate for the purpose of their state primary or caucus. Last night, UTLA voted to endorse Sen. Bernie Sanders using its own iteration of that process, based on its long history with the senator and his long-standing support for a pro-public school agenda.

“We anticipate that other AFT affiliates may endorse other candidates prior to their states’ primary or caucus. Our recent member polling indicates that Vice President Joe Biden and Sen. Elizabeth Warren have healthy double-digit support, followed by Sanders and several other Democratic candidates.

“Educators, healthcare professionals and public employees across this country are engaging in the 2020 election with unprecedented enthusiasm, and we are thrilled that our members are already so involved in this campaign; when our democracy is at stake, no one can afford to sit on the sidelines. We look forward to continuing our engagement with the campaigns as our national endorsement process plays out, and to uniting around an eventual nominee as we work together to beat Donald Trump next November.”

# # # #

The AFT represents 1.7 million pre-K through 12th-grade teachers; paraprofessionals and other school-related personnel; higher education faculty and professional staff; federal, state and local government employees; nurses and healthcare workers; and early childhood educators.

Public Education Forum 2020: Equity and Justice for All
Saturday, December 14, 2019 at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center in Pittsburgh, PA.

American Federation of Teachers
For Release:  Wednesday, March 20, 2019
Contact:  Andrew Crook

AFT Lays Out Path to 2020 Presidential Endorsement

Engagement and Energy Crucial to Evaluate Candidates who Walk the Walk for Members and the Community

WASHINGTON—The American Federation of Teachers has launched its largest and deepest political endorsement effort ahead of the pivotal 2020 presidential election.

The 1.7 million-member union, comprising 3,500 locals, went live today with a website,, and kicked off its inaugural “Walk a Day” campaign to invite candidates to spend a day in the shoes of an AFT member to better understand the challenges and issues our members face in the workplace.

The AFT Votes website includes extensive information on how members can actively participate throughout the endorsement process. It will help members learn more about the candidates and gauge where they stand on key issues, provide resources for members running for office, and more.

AFT members are K-12 teachers and paraprofessionals, healthcare workers, higher education faculty and staff, and public employees who, according to President Randi Weingarten, “reflect the heart and soul of this country.”

Earlier this year, the AFT executive council passed a unanimous motion to establish guiderails for our 2020 presidential endorsement process, with a specific focus on deep engagement and honest conversations before any decision can be made. Members are encouraged to consult directly and extensively with campaigns and only come together behind a candidate when the time is right.

Last night, 30,000 members and activists joined a national telephone town hall to discuss and debate the process.

“Our No. 1 goal is to elect a President who reflects our values and that means beating Donald Trump in 2020,” Weingarten said. “But to win our endorsement, candidates will have to walk the walk, not just talk the talk. As we look ahead to Election Day, we are committed to engaging our members at every step of the way.”

The 2020 AFT endorsement process will include a formal candidate questionnaire, member surveys, focus groups, informational videos and unprecedented member involvement in campaigns, including town halls, social media forums and other opportunities to participate in the democratic process to decide who will receive the union’s grass-roots and financial support as November 2020 draws closer.

Weingarten added: “Over the next several months, we hope our members and their families and friends will use this process to make clear their aspirations for this country and for a standard bearer to help achieve them. We will work together to get to know the candidates and look for a leader who shares our values, has a likelihood of winning and is committed to helping all of us achieve a better life, a voice at work and power in our democracy.”

# # # #

The AFT represents 1.7 million pre-K through 12th-grade teachers; paraprofessionals and other school-related personnel; higher education faculty and professional staff; federal, state and local government employees; nurses and healthcare workers; and early childhood educators.

AFT Resolution

2020 Presidential Endorsement Process

WHEREAS, the American Federation of Teachers is a union of professionals that is committed to bettering the lives of the people we serve and the people we represent—through a voice at work and in our democracy, and by championing economic opportunity and high-quality public education, healthcare and public services; and

WHEREAS, the AFT and our members have a long and proud history of engaging in the political process as a means to improve people’s lives; and

WHEREAS, the AFT, through our national, state and local affiliates, provide a vehicle for working people and our communities to build collective power and to accomplish what is impossible for individuals to achieve alone for a better life and a voice at work and in our democracy; and

WHEREAS, the AFT is committed to advancing the ideals of our democracy, including making it easier—not harder—to register and vote, and to ending the disenfranchisement of millions of voters through voter suppression and gerrymandering schemes; and

WHEREAS, while every election is important to advancing our goals, the 2020 presidential election may be the most important in generations; and  

WHEREAS, the 2020 presidential election process provides an opportunity to elect a new U.S. president who shares our values and aspirations for our country; and

WHEREAS, the 2020 presidential election primary process has already begun, with candidates announcing their campaigns and policies, debates and forums being scheduled, and the slating of delegates for presidential candidates effectively beginning in the summer of 2019 in several large states; and

WHEREAS, the AFT and our members provide an important voice in the political dialogue of our country, a voice that is needed to shape the debate in the presidential primary process regardless of whether the AFT has officially endorsed a candidate; and

WHEREAS, the AFT is committed to its members having a genuine and effective voice in this process and using the vehicle of our union as a means for that voice, a voice that states clearly: “We care, we fight, we show up and we vote!”:

RESOLVED, that the American Federation of Teachers will begin a process of engaging in the 2020 elections; and

RESOLVED, that the process will include:

    • Listening to and engaging our members on the issues and policies that matter to them, including but not limited to issues raised in the AFT’s 2018 convention resolution titled “AFT Goals for Political Endorsements.
    • Ensuring the endorsement process for the 2020 presidential election is transparent and involves meaningful member input and feedback, including informing and educating the members on each step of the endorsement process;
    • Ensuring direct engagement by the candidates with AFT members, as it is vital for the candidates to understand the issues facing our members and their communities. This will include more than candidate questionnaires; it can include, for example, candidates meeting directly with AFT members in candidate forums, Facebook Live conversations, discussions with members at the workplace or other appropriate activities; and
    • Utilizing new tools and technology to engage and educate the membership, a process which may include AFT national town halls using social media, online forums, digital platforms such as Hustle and Twitter, scientific polling or other appropriate tools, with the aim of achieving the greatest level of member participation the AFT has ever had in a presidential process; and

RESOLVED, that with a large field of candidates for U.S. president, many of whom have a record of supporting our issues and with whom the AFT and our affiliates have long-term and strong relationships warranting “favorite daughter/son” support or other preference, the AFT encourages affiliates and members to actively engage the candidate campaigns during the presidential primary process, even before the AFT formally considers the endorsement of candidates; and

RESOLVED, that because the 2020 presidential process will have many defining moments, well before most voters are ever really engaged, the AFT will take steps to educate and communicate with the members about the primary and caucus process, including running for national convention delegate or standing committee member (platform, credentials and rules), in support of a presidential candidate; and

RESOLVED, that in the endorsement process, the AFT executive council may consider, after meaningful input of our membership, which candidate is best for our members, our communities and our country; such an assessment will include consideration of the candidates’ positions on issues, the timing and state of the race, and the candidates’ pathway to victory; and

RESOLVED, that because we are indeed stronger together, if and when the AFT executive council and/or AFT convention delegates vote to endorse a candidate for president, the AFT and our affiliates will work together in every possible way to elect the AFT’s nationally endorsed candidate. 

Please note that a newer resolution, or portion of a resolution, may have superseded an earlier resolution on the same subject. As a result, with the exception of resolutions adopted at our most recent AFT convention, resolutions do not necessarily reflect current AFT policies.

Biden for President   Facebook
May 28, 2019

Joe Biden Outlines Plan for Students, Educators, and Our Future

HOUSTON, TEXAS – Today, Vice President Joe Biden announced his plan to provide public educators the support and respect they need and deserve while investing in all children from birth, so that regardless of zip code, parents’ income, race, or disability all students are prepared to succeed in tomorrow’s economy. Biden outlined these principles today during a town hall in Houston, Texas held together with the American Federation of Teachers, and detailed how a Biden White House would turn these goals into a reality for America’s educators and students. 

“As my wife Jill says, an educator’s profession isn’t just what they do, it is who they are,” said Vice President Joe Biden. “They answer a call to service. They help our children learn and grow into successful adults. For so many young people, knowing they have a teacher believing in and fighting for them can make all the difference. It’s past time we treat and compensate our educators as the professionals they are, and that we make a commitment that no child’s future will be determined by zip code, parents’ income, race, or disability.” 
For more on Vice President Biden’s plan, please see the fact sheet below.

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Warren for President   Facebook
Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Highlights from Warren’s Trip to Pennsylvania

On day of AFT Town Hall, Warren Announced that the Secretary of Education would be a Public School Teacher in her Administration

Charlestown, MA - Elizabeth Warren traveled to Philadelphia yesterday where she held a grassroots donor event to thank supporters and participated in the AFT Votes Town Hall. Warren also announced that in her Administration, the Secretary of Education would be a former public school teacher who is committed to public education.

Rolling Stone: Elizabeth Warren Pledges to Hire a Public School Teacher as Her Education Secretary 
Warren has almost singlehandedly driven the debate around education in the 2020 presidential race.”

Randi Weingarten @rweingarten 
THIS is such great news.... Looking forward to the #AFTVotes townhall with @ewarren this afternoon at 4:30 pm

Huffpost: Elizabeth Warren Promises To Appoint A Public School Teacher As Education Secretary A New York City public school teacher named Liat Olenick approached Warren’s team in March about pledging to make a public school teacher education secretary. Olenick sought out members of Warren’s team at a rally in Long Island City, and kept in touch with them about her idea, she told HuffPost...Olenick said she believes the pledge represents proof of Warren’s commitment to public education.

Rebecca Klein @rklein90 
Randi Weingarten is giving a particularly enthusiastic intro to Elizabeth Warren right now, before Warren's town hall with teachers. "She understands the needs of unions and she understands the aspirations of public education."

Philly Inquirer: Elizabeth Warren makes first 2020 campaign stop in Philly, promises a pro-public school administration Warren, who worked as a special education teacher in New Jersey earlier in her career, has stumped on the need for more federal funding of public schools, universal child care and pay requirements for early-childhood education teachers. She has also unveiled a plan for student-debt forgiveness and making two and four-year public college tuition free. All topics she touched on Monday.

adam harris @AdamHSays Warren on her proposed $50 billion for HBCUs and MSIs: "We have a problem in education, and part of it has been that we have not given equal resources and opportunity to students of color, and here is one way to attack that head on."

CNN: Warren added that her pick would be someone "who understands how low pay, tattered textbooks, and crumbling classrooms hurt students and educators," and someone "who understands the crushing burden of student debt on students and young professionals and who is committed to actually doing something about it."

Lauren S. Camera @laurenonthehill Warren pitches wealth tax to pay for universal childcare, universal pre-K, raise wages of preschool teachers and child care workers, make every public tech school, 2-yr college, 4-yr college tuition and fee-free, put $50 billion into HBCUs, cancel student loan debt for 95%.

GQ: Elizabeth Warren Calls Betsy DeVos “The Worst Secretary of Education We’ve Seen” And vows to appoint an actual teacher if elected president.


Amy for America   Facebook
May 9, 2019

TOMORROW: U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar To Visit Yonkers Public Schools, Participate in American Federation of Teachers Town Hall

YONKERS, NY — Tomorrow, Friday, May 10, U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar will join American Federation of Teachers (AFT) President Randi Weingarten, Yonkers Federation of Teachers (YFT) President Samantha Rosado-Ciriello and members of the YFT and New York’s statewide teacher’s federation in visits to two Yonkers public schools. Following the school visits, Klobuchar will participate in an AFT Votes town hall.  

Schedule for Friday, May 10:

WHO: U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar, AFT President Randi Weingarten, YFT President Samantha Rosado-Ciriello
WHAT: Sen. Klobuchar to visit Charles E. Gorton High School
WHEN: Friday, May 10 at 1:00 p.m. EST
WHERE: Charles E. Gorton High School — 100 Shonnard Place, Yonkers, NY 10703

WHO: U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar, AFT President Randi Weingarten, YFT President Samantha Rosado-Ciriello
WHAT: Sen. Klobuchar to visit School 9
WHEN: Friday, May 10 at 2:00 p.m. EST
WHERE: School 9 — 53 Fairview Street Yonkers, NY 10703

WHO: U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar
WHAT: Klobuchar to participate in AFT Votes Town Hall
WHEN: Friday, May 10 at 3:30 p.m. EST
WHERE: Yonkers High School — 150 Rockland Avenue, Yonkers, NY 10705

Tim Ryan for America  Facebook
May 2, 2019

ADVISORY: TOMORROW – Democratic Presidential Candidate Rep. Tim Ryan to Address New York State United Teachers’ Representative Assembly

Congressman Ryan Will Address NYSUT and Participate in Town Hall Q & A

YOUNGSTOWN, OH – TOMORROW, U.S. Congressman Tim Ryan (D-OH) will address more than 2,000 New York State United Teachers (NYSUT) delegates in Albany, New York for the union’s 47th annual Representative Assembly. During the assembly’s general session on Friday evening, Ryan and American Federation of Teachers (AFT) President Randi Weingarten will address NYSUT delegates and discuss his commitment to supporting our nation’s teachers and to bolstering our national education system.
As a presidential candidate, Ryan has underscored the importance of tackling structural problems in our health care and education policies, and the need for critical reforms to help make sure educators and students have the tools and trauma-informed resources they need to learn and thrive.
Following his remarks, Congressman Ryan will join AFT President Weingarten in a town hall with select NYSUT members where he will answer questions as part of AFT’s 2020 endorsement process.  
WHAT: Congressman Ryan address New York State United Teachers (NYSUT) delegates for the union’s 47th Representative Assembly. Following his remarks, Ryan will participate in a town hall Q & A session with NYSUT members.
WHEN: Friday, May 3, 2019 between 5:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m. ET
WHERE: Albany Capital Center – 55 Eagle Street, Albany, NY 12207

Bernie 2020  Facebook
April 11, 2019

Sarah Ford:
Bill Neidhardt:

Bernie Sanders to Tour Midwest Battleground States


Sanders to make stops in Wisconsin, Indiana, Michigan, Ohio and Pennsylvania to highlight Democrats’ path to victory in 2020
WASHINGTON -- U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders will visit battleground states in the Midwest on Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Monday. 

Sanders will hold rallies in Madison, Wisconsin, Warren, Michigan and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He will also meet with community members in Gary, Indiana, and union workers in Coopersville, Michigan, and Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania.

In Lordstown, Ohio, Sanders will sit down with AFT President Randi Weingarten, experts and workers in the community to discuss everything from plant closures to schools.

Sanders will end the swing with a stop in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, to participate in a town hallhosted by FOX News. 

The tour will emphasize that Democrats’ clearest and strongest path to victory in 2020 runs through the upper Midwest -- and that Bernie Sanders is by far the best-positioned candidate to win these states and defeat Donald Trump. At rallies in Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania -- three states that flipped and voted for Donald Trump in 2016 -- Sanders will deliver a message focused on fighting against unfair trade deals that undermine workers wages and enrich CEOs, rebuilding and strengthening unions and guaranteeing health care as a right to all with Medicare for All.

Sunday, April 14
1 p.m. Ohio Workers Town Hall Meeting with AFT President Randi Weingarten
High School, 1824 Salt Springs Road, Warren, OH 44481
Information for the public: This event is free and open to the public. Tickets are not required, but an RSVP is encouraged. Entrance is provided on a first come, first served basis.