Stick Makes Teachers Sick
Education Austin walks the blocks for Mark Strama
The campaign was organized by Education Austin, the AISD teacher's union. While it's common for unions to support candidates, send out promotional materials, or run phone banks, the block walk was the first of its kind, reflecting a deep (if not necessarily broad) enthusiasm on the part of many local groups to get hands-on with campaigns in a divisive election season. And for teachers, Stick who served on the House Appropriations Committee that did the budget-chopping was a natural target. "On his Web site he boasts that along with the Republican majority he balanced the budget without raising taxes," said Dick Fralin, a special education teacher at Porter Middle School who went on the walk. "Well, about $10 billion had to be accounted for, and a lot of that came out of public education. They balanced the budget on our backs."
Education Austin head Louis Malfaro noted that the group's determination was also fired by Stick's comment when Malfaro delivered the news that the teachers would support Strama. "He quoted Lao-Tzu to me," said Malfaro. "He said, 'If you're going to try to kill the king, you better make sure you kill him.'"