Kyle Olson
Just a few short years ago, communist sympathizers were typically run out of government. Today, they’re given leadership positions. At least that’s the case in Connecticut.

Gov. Dannel Malloy recently appointed former American Federation of Teachers-Connecticut President Sharon Palmer to lead the state Department of Labor.

Who is she? Besides a labor boss, Palmer is an honoree of the Communist Party USA. In 2004, she was honored for her contributions to “the movement for social change.”

Nobody is suggesting that Palmer is a Communist. But she appeared perfectly comfortable when reminded by the media about the award. And the statue she received currently sits in her office at union headquarters, according to .

“I’m a coalition builder and a collaborator, and I work with people who have mutual interests with whatever it is I’m working on, no matter who it is,” Palmer was quoted as saying.

The Communists seemed truly excited when they learned about Palmer’s appointment. blared the headline “Malloy appoints Comrade Palmer Commissar of Labor Department.” The ensuing story described Palmer as a “Communist Party USA honoree and supporter.”

Oh well. From our perspective, it’s probably better to have Palmer shuffled away to an office job that keeps her out of the education wars.

After all, it was Palmer’s union that went into "kill mode" to defeat a bill that would have empowered Connecticut parents to take over failing schools though a law known as the “parent trigger.” Afterward union leaders were overheard referring to parents as “the enemy.”

Malloy’s appointment is likely an attempt to kiss and make up with the radical labor bosses for his audacity to propose meager education reforms earlier this year.

In any case, we’re certain that Palmer wants to be taken seriously in her new job. Her connections with the Communists may not work in her favor in that regard.

Perhaps her parents never warned her that you are judged by the company you keep. Nowhere is that more true than in the unforgiving world of politics.

Best of luck in your new endeavors, Comrade Palmer.

Kyle Olson

Kyle is founder of Education Action Group and, a news service dedicated to education reform and school spending research, reporting, analysis and commentary.

He is co-author of Glenn Beck’s “Conform: Exposing the Truth About Common Core and Public Education,” available at

Kyle is a contributor to

He has made appearances on the Fox News Channel, The Blaze, Fox Business Network, NPR and MSNBC. Kyle has given scores of interviews on talk radio programs coast to coast.

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