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New Disclosure Rules Expose NEA's Millions to 'Left-Wing' Causes

By Jim Brown
January 5, 2006

(AgapePress) - A union watchdog group says a new disclosure report confirms that the nation's largest teachers union, the National Education Association (NEA), is heavily involved in the wider liberal political movement and the Democratic Party.

Earlier this week, the Wall Street Journal reported that the NEA gave $65 million last year to liberal groups such as People for the American Way, the Rainbow/PUSH Coalition, the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD), and the Human Rights Campaign, which is the largest pro-homosexual lobby in the U.S.

In the past, unions with at least one private sector member have had to report their costs and expenses, but they have been able to lump them into large categories such as contributions, gifts, and grants. But now, under new federal rules, the NEA must detail where all its grants have gone, down to $5,000.

Mike Antonucci with the California-based Education Intelligence Agency has been monitoring the NEA for years. He says the new rules have not changed the NEA?s political activity, but they help reveal the union?s extensive contributions to left-wing causes.

"Now we can see with our own eyes where [a lot of this money] is going," Antonucci explains, "and we can't just sit around and accept the union's explanation that 'Oh, this is going to improve public education' [or] whatever words they use to describe it."

According to the spokesman for the Education Intelligence Agency, the union gave very little to "right-wing" causes. Antonucci offers this explanation for that which might be considered in that category.

"They want to cultivate more of what they would call 'moderate Republicans' against conservative opponents," he says. "So whenever you see NEA political money going to Republicans, it's always when the Republican is in a primary against a more conservative Republican."

Although the NEA says it has favored the disclosure rules all along, Antonucci notes the union claimed the regulations were onerous when it unsuccessfully sued the U.S. Department of Labor.

Reportedly more than half of the NEA's 600 employees make six-figure salaries, yet the average teacher made only $48,000 last year.

Jim Brown, a regular contributor to AgapePress, is a reporter for American Family Radio News, which can be heard online.

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