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Observers Say Teachers Union Loses Political Clout

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ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — The leader of the state teacher’s union says the organization is facing a different political landscape at the Capitol, but expects to retain its political clout.

Democratic lawmakers and DFL-friendly groups received most of the $1.2 million in political contributions the union made last year. And with Republicans taking control of the Legislature, Education Minnesota’s chief, Tom Dooher, has been spending time getting to know the new faces around the Capitol.

DFL Rep. Mindy Greiling says the union’s clout has waned with Republicans in control. Republican Pat Garofalo took Greiling’s chairmanship of the education finance committee. Garofalo tells Minnesota Public Radio News the union is no different than the superintendents or school board association. He says they all have voices in the education debate.

(© Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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