GOP runoff: AEA an issue separating Byrne, Bentley

Associated Press - July 3, 2010 12:44 PM ET

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) - The Alabama Education Association has become a central issue in the Republican runoff for governor.

Bradley Bryne says AEA stands for the worst in the teaching profession and his opponent is a longtime supporter.

Bentley, a two-term state legislator, says he votes with AEA sometimes and other times he doesn't. He says Alabama's next governor must work with all education groups, including AEA, to improve public schools.

Among the issues AEA opposes is charter schools. Byrne is a former state school board member, and he supported the governor's bill in the last legislative session to legalize charter schools. Bentley helped kill it. He says Alabama should begin with a low-cost pilot program rather than the statewide program Riley advocated.

Copyright 2010 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.