MONTGOMERY, AL - Republican candidate for governor Bradley Byrne says the Alabama Education Association stands for the worst in the teaching profession, not the best.
Byrne held a news conference on the Capitol steps Tuesday where he staked out the teachers' lobbying group as the target for his campaign. Byrne predicted that AEA will spend hundreds of thousands of dollars, possibly millions, to try to keep him from winning the 2010 race for governor.
Byrne is the state's former two-year college chancellor. In that job, he fought against AEA to get criminal background checks for college employees and to ban employees from serving in the
Byrne signed a pledge Tuesday not to take any campaign money from AEA directly or indirectly and challenged the other five Republican candidates for governor to do the same.
WSFA 12 News contacted the AEA for their response. " This organization represents the interests of its members...," said AEA President Paul Hubbert. " He [Byrne] apparently has chosen to slap the face of every teacher and everyone else who has joined AEA."
The powerful AEA boasts a membership of more than 103,000 teachers and other education professionals.