The National Education Association (NEA), the nations largest union, announced Saturday night it is endorsing Joe BidenJoe BidenTrump faces toughest crisis of presidency in coronavirusTrump campaign turns to virtual tools amid coronavirus spreadWhere Biden and Sanders stand in the polls ahead of Tuesday’s primariesMORE for president, a major boost for the former vice president as he battles with Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersThis is how devastating the Green New Deal would be for WisconsinOvernight Health Care Presented by Philip Morris International Trump declares national emergency | Pelosi announces deal on coronavirus package | Trump pledges to overhaul virus testingOvernight Energy: Trump to buy crude oil to help industry | Sanders, Democrats decry assistance to oil companies amid coronavirus | Judge sides with California in cap-and-trade lawsuitMORE (I-Vt.) for labor support in the Democratic race.
Lily Eskelsen Garcia, the president of the 3-million member strong NEA, cited Bidens vocal support for public education and his plans to boost teacher pay and make schooling more available across the country.
The National Education Association proudly recommends Vice President Joe Biden for President of the United States. Biden is the tireless advocate for public education and is the partner that students and educators need now in the White House, Eskelsen Garcia said in a statement.
He understands that as a nation we have a moral responsibility to provide a great neighborhood public school for every student in every ZIP code. As president, he is committed to attracting and retaining the best educators by paying them as the professionals that they are as well as increasing funding for support staff and paraprofessionals.
Biden has made concerted efforts to cast himself as a staunch ally of public education, often citing his wifes career as a teacher, releasing sweeping plans to boost school resources, triple funds for Title I schools, make higher education accessible, and attending three of NEAs presidential forums.
The endorsement came after NEA voted on which candidate to back. The union is also the largest organization to endorse a candidate in the primary thus far.
The NEAs support is the latest boost to Biden, who is riding a wave of momentum from a weeklong winning streak. The former vice president has cemented his status as the primary fields frontrunner over Sanders after wins in 10 of 14 Super Tuesday states as well as several states this week, including a key win in Michigan.
Biden is also expected to perform well Tuesday when Arizona, Florida, Illinois and Ohio hold their primaries.
Biden and Sanders are fiercely competing for union support as they each seek to burnish their bona fides among white working class voters that voted for President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump faces toughest crisis of presidency in coronavirusHouse passes bill to help prop up economy from coronavirusWhite House physician: Trump doesn’t require test after exposure to 2 people with coronavirusMORE in 2016.