The candidates vying to succeed him can "shill" all they want for the teachers union, but they may very well be wasting their time, Mayor Michael Bloomberg told reporters today, during a press conference at the education department headquarters near City Hall.
"The last time the U.F.T.'s endorsement got somebody elected was better than two decades ago, O.K.?" said Bloomberg. "It's almost the kiss of death."
In a statement, UFT President Michael Mulgrew said, "Dozens of candidates in local and citywide elections have won with UFT backing in recent years, and many are seeking it this year, while running away from Bloomberg and his record. Right now most candidates would rather be the victim of zombie attack than get a Michael Bloomberg endorsement."
Actually Bloomberg is closer to the truth than Mulgrew and the UFT leadership want to admit.
The UFT hasn't endorsed a winning mayoral candidate since Dinkins.
The UFT rank and file don't even vote in their own union elections.
And the biggest GOTV effort the UFT put forth in the 2012 election was in Florida with retired teachers - you know, the kind who are ineligible to vote in a NYC mayoral election.
So the UFT leadership may think the UFT endorsement is "coveted," but frankly, Bloomberg isn't all that far off with his statement.