Massachusetts teachers delivered another blow to frontrunner Hillary Clinton, joining a prominent list of labor groups that have delayed endorsements in the Democratic primary.
Clinton failed to win the endorsement of the largest education union in Massachusetts on the eve of her visit to the state. The Massachusetts chapter of the National Education Association resisted calls from its national parent to endorse the former secretary of state after union officials heard grumbling in their ranks, according to the New York Post.
Making such an early endorsement "does not allow members to be active participants in the kinds of discussion and debate that are central to a democratic union," Massachusetts Teachers Association president Barbara Madeloni wrote on the union’s website.
The National Teachers Association was pushing for the endorsement, Madeloni said.
But she noted that the "tone" at a recent meeting of state chapter presidents "strongly opposed an early endorsement of any candidate."
The union represents thousands of education professionals in the backyard of insurgent Clinton challenger Sen. Bernie Sanders (I., Vt.). Many labor groups have made similar moves to delay endorsements as members clamor for Sanders as well as the potential entrance of Vice President Joe Biden into the race.
The Service Employees International Union; American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees; and AFL-CIO have all announced that they will delay their endorsements in the Democratic primary because they want to give their multi-million-member coalitions time to vet candidates.