Minnesota’s teachers union, one of Gov. Tim Walz’s top political allies, has donated nearly $2 million to state Democrats so far this election cycle.
According to new campaign finance reports, Education Minnesota’s political action committee gifted $513,000 each to the House and Senate DFL caucuses, and another $900,000 to the DFL State Central Committee, for a total of $1.9 million. All of the donations were made in August and September.
Emails previously obtained by Alpha News show the union was given inside access to the Walz administration throughout the pandemic and its president, Denise Specht, had a close working relationship with the governor’s former education commissioner.
Education Minnesota was a vocal proponent of the governor’s COVID-19 school closures, even as Specht took in a salary of $211,000 while parents were forced to stay home with their kids for virtual learning.
Many have blamed the governor’s COVID-19 policies for Minnesota’s declining test scores. Only 44.8% of students are proficient in math and nearly half (48.9%) cannot read at grade level, according to the latest data from the Department of Education.
A parents group called on the union to apologize this week after Specht accused conservative school board candidates of wanting to “make schools less welcoming” and “whitewash American history.” Specht also attacked the “MAGA media” for their “wild accusations.”