ALBANY—New York's largest teachers' union announced early endorsements in the races for state attorney general and comptroller, but Governor Andrew Cuomo will have to wait until August to see if educators will back him in November.
Karen Magee, president of New York State United Teachers, told Capital on Monday that “nothing has changed” since she was elected in early April, and that there wasn't much appetite for a Cuomo endorsement.
“We're a grassroots movement,” Magee said, adding that the early endorsements for incumbent Democrats Eric Schneiderman and Tom DiNapoli “came up through the rank and file.”
While she called those endorsements “no brainers” and “pretty obvious,” members aren't so inclined to embrace Cuomo.
“I haven't gotten any calls or any e-mails to that effect, but again … the endorsement process for the governor will happen at the August endorsement conference," she said. "The local presidents will travel to Albany, they will have the pulse of their membership, and they will hammer out the endorsement.”
It doesn't matter whether NYSUT endorses Cuomo or not because the real union support for Cuomo was shown last week when union leaders threatened to tear apart the Working Families Party and cut off funding if the party did not place Cuomo on the WFP ballot line.
Whether NYSUT or the UFT endorse Cuomo at this point is immaterial because he got what he needed out of the unions last week in the Working Families Party melodrama.