The New Jersey Education Association (NJEA) is the National Education Association (NEA’s) second-largest state affiliate and by far the leading contributor to the national union’s political action committee, according to figures obtained by the Education Intelligence Agency (EIA).
As of October 2007, NJEA members, officers, and activists in 2007 had contributed almost $139,000 to the $1.7 million war chest of the NEA Fund for Children and Public Education. As with every NEA affiliate, most of that money was collected during the NEA Representative Assembly in Philadelphia last July.
Although NEA boasts 3.2 million members, the 8,800 delegates to the union’s national convention are responsible for more than three-quarters of the PAC contributions. Regional leadership conferences also have a campaign contribution component, which accounted for an additional $82,000 from those who attended the events, according to the EIA figures, which were obtained in late November.
The top 10 PAC contributing state affiliates are:
1. New Jersey – $138,982
2. Illinois – $86,848
3. Michigan – $76,671
4. Ohio – $75,370
5. Tennessee – $67,843
6. Wisconsin – $67,038
7. Connecticut – $66,866
8. Pennsylvania – $63,092
9. Indiana – $59,807
10. Florida – $55,320
NEA’s largest affiliate, the California Teachers Association, ranks only 15th in contributions to the national PAC, with $42,233.
Mike Antonucci ([email protected]) is director of the Education Intelligence Agency, an educational research and investigations group based in Elk Grove, California.