The Daily Caller

The Daily Caller
In this Thursday, Aug. 30, 2012 photo, Emily Ponce, 8, a second-grader at Manuel Perez Jr. Elementary School, in Chicago In this Thursday, Aug. 30, 2012 photo, Emily Ponce, 8, a second-grader at Manuel Perez Jr. Elementary School, in Chicago's predominantly Hispanic Pilsen neighborhood, watches her brother Jose Ponce, 13, a Perez eighth-grader, as he talks about the chance of a teachers strike. (AP Photo/M. Spencer Green)  

School choice movement raises public profile as Chicago strike deadline looms

As the clock ticks down to a planned Sept. 10 teachers strike in Chicago, teachers unions and battles over school choice are gaining higher profiles nationally.

“Won’t Back Down” – a pro-school choice movie starring Maggie Gyllenhaal — had a screening at the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C., ruffling feathers with the threat of a wide Hollywood release that could make Chicago the flashpoint for broader education policy fights.

And more than 37,000 people have watched “The Machine,” a YouTube video about the impact of teachers unions on public elections, since its launch Wednesday.

The video illustrates how money flows between taxpayers, teacher unions and politicians while students are neglected. The largest teachers union — the National Education Association — spent $40 million on the 2010 midterm elections alone.

It also donated $100,000 that year to Media Matters For America, a liberal messaging group, which subsequently covered education issues with a slant that favored the union. (RELATED: After $100k ‘public relations’ payment from teachers union, Media Matters attacked Fox News)

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