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January 9, 2012

1) NEA Gave More Than $18.8 Million to Advocacy Groups. An Education Intelligence Agency analysis of NEA's financial disclosure report for the 2010-11 fiscal year reveals the national union contributed over $18.8 million to a wide variety of advocacy groups and charities. The total was about $5 million higher than the previous year, but short of the record $26 million spent in 2008-09.

The expenditures fall into broad categories of community outreach grants, charitable contributions, and payments for services rendered. In this list, EIA has deliberately omitted spending such as media buys, or payments to pollsters or consultants that have no obvious ideological component. The grants range from $3.15 million to America's Families First, down to smaller grants to organizations such as People for the American Way, Media Matters and Netroots Nation.

Here is an alphabetic list of the 121 recipients of NEA's contributions, with relevant web links. All of these were paid for with members' dues money (the union's federal PAC is a separate entity funded through voluntary means):

400% Is Too High - $50,000

AFL-CIO - $2.2 million ($1.2 million member communication research and strategy, $1 million legislative policy development)

AFSCME - $20,000

American Rights at Work - $10,000

America Votes - $1,721,000

American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education - $74,000

American Constitution Society - $10,000

Americans United for Change - $30,000

America's Families First - $3,150,000

Center for American Progress - $25,000

Center for Economic Organizing - $25,300

Center for Law and Education - $25,000

Center for Tax and Budget Accountability - $20,000

Center for Teaching Quality - $318,848

Center for U.S. Global Leadership - $10,000

Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association - $50,000

Class Size Matters - $25,000

Clergy Strategic Alliances - $21,000

Coalition for Our Communities - $700,000

Coalition to Save Our Constitution - $25,000

Committee for Children - $10,000

Committee for Education Funding - $19,913

Committee on States - $60,000

Communities for Quality Education - $1 million

Congressional Black Caucus Foundation, Inc. - $170,000

Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute - $55,000

Council of Chief State School Officers - $50,417

Council of State Governments - $19,750

Democracy Alliance - $85,000

Economic Policy Institute - $255,000

Education Commission of the States - $60,000

Education Writers Association - $11,500

Educator Compensation Institute - $25,000

Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the United States Senate - $200,000

Employee Benefit Research Institute - $7,500

Everybody Wins DC - $8,000

Excelencia in Education - $15,000

Fair Districts Florida - $800,000

FairTest - $35,000

Gay Lesbian and Straight Education Network - $7,500

Global Institute for Language and Literacy Development - $18,000

Good Jobs First - $15,000

Great Lakes Center for Education Research and Practice - $250,000

Health Care for America Now! - $125,000

Hip Hop Caucus Education Fund - $10,000

Hispanic Institute - $50,000

HOPE (Yes on SQ 744) - $1,500,000 ($1,758,000 last year)

Human Rights Campaign - $5,000

Idahoans for Responsible Education Reform - $157,000

Initiative for Responsible Investment - $5,000

Institute for Educational Leadership - $5,000

Jobs with Justice - $10,000

Jump$tart Coalition for Personal Financial Literacy - $11,700

Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights Under Law - $40,000

Leadership Conference on Civil Rights - $10,000

League of United Latin American Citizens - $70,000

Learning First Alliance - $22,800

Lincoln Center Institute - $75,000

MediaMatters - $100,000

Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund - $10,000

Midwest Academy - $5,000

NAACP - $25,000

National Action Network - $60,000

National Association for Asian and Pacific American Education - $5,000

National Association for Equal Opportunity in Higher Education - $17,500

National Association for Multicultural Education - $5,000

National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials Education Fund - $12,500

National Black Caucus of State Legislators - $5,500

National Board for Professional Teaching Standards - $10,000

National Coalition on Black Civic Participation - $22,500

National Conference of State Legislatures - $40,946

National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education - $400,373

National Immigration Law Center - $5,000

National Indian Education Association - $19,900

National Jewish Democratic Council - $5,000

National Labor College - $17,881

National Pan-Hellenic Council - $50,000

National Parent Teachers Association - $6,250

National Professional Teachers' Organisation of South Africa - $10,000

National Public Pension Coalition - $135,000

National Women's Law Center - $10,000

Netroots Nation - $24,999

New Democratic Network - $15,000

New Organizing Institute - $10,000

New Teacher Center - $333,834

North Carolina Citizens for Protecting Our Schools- $200,000

One Nation/TIDES - $250,000

Parent Teacher Home Visit Project - $10,000

Partnership for 21st Century Skills - $45,000

Patriot Majority PAC - $200,000

People for the American Way - $128,050

Pew Charitable Trusts - $5,000

Phi Delta Kappa International - $50,000

Progress Michigan - $10,000

Progress Now - $125,000

Progressive Future - $100,000

Progressive Majority - $46,625

Project New West - $333,498

Rainbow PUSH Coalition - $5,000

Rebuild America's Schools - $60,000

University of Colorado Boulder Sponsored Project - $250,000

Republican Main Street Partnership - $20,000

Ripon Society - $10,000

Robert Russa Moton Museum - $50,000

Rock the Vote - $80,000

Saving First Things First - $50,000

United for a Fair Economy - $12,000

United for Missouri Priorities - $250,000

University of New Hampshire Institute on Disability - $25,000

U.S. Action - $80,000

U.S. Global Leadership Coalition - $15,000

U.S. Hispanic Leadership Institute - $31,004

Voter Activation Network - $71,900

VoteVets.org - $270,000

WAND Education Fund - $15,000

Washington, DC Martin Luther King, Jr. National Memorial Project Foundation - $167,336

Washingtonians for Education, Health & Tax Relief - $750,000

Will Steger Foundation - $10,276

Win Minnesota Political Action Fund - $50,000

Women's Voices, Women Vote - $50,000

Youth Service America - $20,000

Many of the largest donations from NEA headquarters went to state ballot initiative groups, but these do not constitute the sum total of the national union's spending on state political measures.

For example, the national union sent millions of dollars directly to state affiliates to fund various activities, including $1.4 million to the Wisconsin Education Association Council during the height of its collective bargaining battle in the state legislature.

In another case, NEA sent $800,000 to Fair Districts Florida, in addition to $250,000 last year, but also sent $500,000 to the Florida Education Association PAC, and another $851,000 in financial assistance to FEA, outside of its regular UniServ subsidy.

This year spending reflects a greater interest in broad labor issues than in years past, spurred by events in Wisconsin, Ohio and elsewhere.

For further information about the extent and purpose of NEA's political spending, you are best directed to my 2010 article for Education Next, titled "The Long Reach of Teachers Unions."

All of these figures were culled from NEA's disclosure report for the U.S. Department of Labor.

2)  Last Week's Intercepts. EIA's blog, Intercepts, covered these topics from January 4-9:

*  Matt Damon's Mom Won't Let Him Be NEA's Friend of Education. Hoist with the lefty petard.

The Bourne Ultimatum. Has Matt Damon destroyed NEA's "New Action Agenda?"

Unplug Your DVR. Rogue NEA president or inattentive union reps?

About 65% Wrong. The last state is about to abandon the 65% solution.

*  Wishful Thinking or Inside Poop? Second look at merger?

Timely. 99% slower.

3) Scheduling Note. The next e-mail communiqué will appear on Tuesday, January 17.

4) Quote of the Week. "Even if [Wisconsin Gov. Scott] Walker is recalled, it's going to take time to reinstate collective bargaining in the state." - Milwaukee Teachers Education Association president Bob Peterson. (January 4 Third Coast Digest)

   

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