The contagion is spreading: Arizona is the latest red state where teachers — backed by immense public sympathy — are staging first-of-its-kind state walkout, protesting against the very idea of neoliberal austerity, recognizing that with the GOP running their state and their nation, that the problem is Republicanism, not some local phenomenon.
The right knows it too: that's why billionaires are pouring money into the development of talking points to discredit teachers. The red states are on fire and progressives are cheering them on, but it remains to be seen whether Democrats will recognize the teachers in blue states who've been shafted by plutocrat-friendly Democratic leadership.
The teachers were offered concessions by the state, but they followed the example set by Oklahoma teachers and demanded across-the-board economic justice for their colleagues throughout the education sector, refusing to be divided and conquered.
"The worst possible thing we could do is not take action right now," Noah Karvelis, an organizer for Arizona Educators United, told ABC affiliate KNXV.
Many teachers in the state say Ducey's promise is not enough, and makes no mention of raises or benefits for other school employees besides teachers.
"He made no mention of education support professionals," said Vanessa Jimenez, vice president of the Phoenix Union Classified Employees Association.
"When I think of his proposal, it's an attempt to divide us," she added to the local news source. "We're not going to be divided."
Arizona teachers to walk out in first-ever statewide strike [John Bowden/The Hill]