The teachers shouldn’t be too worried about the Times’ exposé since their union is now defending their shameful ineptness at instructing students.Union protection of its bloated, inefficient bureaucracy has reached ghastly levels in the Golden State. The same unions that are protesting a newspaper reporting on the quality of their members are among the biggest political players in California. One of their key focuses this election year is Proposition 25.
Proposition 25, which will appear on the November ballot, would remove the two-thirds legislative vote requirement for passing a budget—and passing tax increases. Instead, a simple majority of the legislature, or the controlling political party, could pass whatever budget they want without any input from the minority party.
California’s budget is often passed long after its constitutional deadline. In just a few days, the legislature will set a new record for failing to pass a state budget on time. Proposition 25 backers claim that a simple majority vote would ensure the budget is passed on time. But in a legislature dominated by Democrats, Proposition 25 would give the controlling party carte blanche when it comes to feeding the unions and expanding bureaucracy—all at taxpayer expense.
Always eager to guard their more-than-fair-share of the government budget, teachers unions are among the biggest donors to the Yes on Proposition 25 campaign. The California Federation of Teachers donated $1.25 million, California Teachers Association donated $250,000, the California Faculty Association donated $100,000, and the California School Employees Association donated $450,000.
It’s common for teachers unions to throw around huge dollars in political campaigns just to safeguard their interests. But ridding the state constitution of the added taxpayer protections in a two-thirds budget vote would clear the way for unions to get whatever they want—including the kind of wasteful spending found in LAUSD. Keep in mind LAUSD is currently grappling with deficit of $640 million. The $578 million school could have covered almost the entire deficit. Although bond measures financed the school’s construction, such wasteful spending is not uncommon throughout the school system.
Big unions are the biggest hindrance to the education reforms so desperately needed. Bankrupt school districts and the union leeches can keep building their monuments to mediocrity. But eventually, their work product won’t have the education or skills necessary to keep financing such vapid opulence.