Dear Commons Community,
Karen Lewis, President of the Chicago Teachers Union (CTU), is taking on Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel and his political allies over the closing of fifty public schools in Chicago. A day after the mayor’s hand-picked board of education OKed the closure to supposedly stymie a $1 billion budget shortfall, the Chicago Teachers Union renewed its promise to challenge Emanuel for the mayor’s seat in 2015.
“Clearly, we have to change the political landscape in the city,” CTU President Karen Lewis said according to the Sun-Times. “We have to go back to old-style democracy.”
Emanuel, who spent Wednesday’s vote working from his fifth-floor office at City Hall, was unwavering, saying, “I will absorb the political consequence so our children have a better future.”
The union’s plan includes ramping up political activity for the purpose of ousting Emanuel, though the plans don’t stop with the mayor: The CTU has also vowed to dismantle the mayoral-appointed school board and replace it with an elected one.
Lewis told NPR the “cowboy-mentality” of how the mayor wields power over the school board is “out of control.”
“We’re starting our deputy registration, and we will be registering voters across the city,” Lewis said.
True to their word, the union already had a voter registration drive on Thursday at South Side Church in the Grand Boulevard neighborhood.
Go for it, Karen!