AFT Resolution


WHEREAS, the members of the American Federation of Teachers play a critical and active role in our democracy; and
WHEREAS, the AFT, its affiliates and its members have rededicated ourselves to reclaiming the promise of America for all our children, families and communities; and 
WHEREAS, the 2016 presidential election, like any other presidential election, provides an opportunity to elect a president who shares our vision for America; and 
WHEREAS, traditionally, the endorsement is decided in two phases: For the primaries, the AFT executive council, which is elected by the convention delegates to represent the full membership, makes endorsement recommendations. For the general election, our convention chooses our candidate; and
WHEREAS, in considering an endorsement for president, the AFT considers which candidate shares our values, has the support of our members, and is strong and electable; and 
WHEREAS, toward this end, since February 2015, the AFT has engaged our members in a variety of ways on both the issues and the candidates, has conducted two polls, has held two town hall forums, has established the "You Decide 2016" and the "You Got Schooled" websites, has conducted research on where each candidate stands, and has invited all candidates to complete a questionnaire and meet with our executive council; and 
WHEREAS, Hillary Clinton has spent her entire career, both in the private and public sectors, working to ensure that everyone has an equal opportunity to climb the ladder of success; and
WHEREAS, Hillary Clinton has a proven record in leading the fight for high-quality healthcare, including proper staffing levels; for high-quality public education for all, starting with our youngest children; was an original co-sponsor of the Employee Free Choice Act; defended public service workers who came to our nation's defense on Sept. 11; and has a deep and long record on economic and social justice issues—from voting rights to immigrant rights to women's rights to worker rights—earning a 100 percent AFT voting record during her time in the U.S. Senate; and
WHEREAS, Hillary Clinton has pledged to help build an economy that produces good jobs and rising wages, and will work with educators, telling the AFT, "It's just dead wrong to make teachers the scapegoats for all of society's problems. Where I come from, teachers are the solution. And I strongly believe that unions are part of the solution too"; and
WHEREAS, the stakes are critically high in this election, when corporate-backed politicians want to preserve today's status quo—a rigged, trickle-down economic system—and to do that, they want to eviscerate unions; and
WHEREAS, these politicians know that unions give working people power at the bargaining table and the ballot box; and
WHEREAS, in a scientific poll conducted in late June 2015, 79 percent of members who can vote in the Democratic primary support a primary endorsement, and, by more than a 3-to-1 margin, those members prefer Hillary Clinton; and 
WHEREAS, the AFT has received resolutions from several affiliates urging the executive council to endorse Hillary Clinton for the Democratic nomination; and 
WHEREAS, the 2016 election campaign is already well underway and an endorsement now will enable the AFT to help shape the debate and drive an agenda to reclaim the promise of America; and
WHEREAS, Hillary Clinton is a tested leader who shares our values, is supported by AFT members, and is prepared for a tough fight in order to champion the interest of students, families and communities:
RESOLVED, that the American Federation of Teachers endorses Hillary Clinton for president in the Democratic primary; and
RESOLVED, that the AFT and its state and local affiliates commit to engaging and mobilizing our 1.6 million members, their families and their communities to reclaim the promise of America and to help secure the Democratic nomination for Hillary Clinton.