‘Who decides on candidate endorsements?’

MEA-MFT’s candidate endorsement process involves hundreds of hours of research and hundreds of local MEA-MFT members across the state interviewing candidates.

It’s an exhaustive process that brings you the best information about candidates—always based on issues, not on the candidate's political party or personality.
MEA-MFT's Committee On Political Education (COPE) Board endorses candidates who support members’ work, working conditions and rights, and the Montana people our members serve. 

Members of MEA-MFT's COPE Board
listen intently during interviews of candidates
for Montana statewide office.

Voting records
MEA-MFT compiles legislative voting records on votes of importance to our members. The votes tallied include funding for k-12 schools, the university system, and state services; member pay, health care, and retirement issues; and workers’ rights.

The voting record is published in MEA-MFT Today and on this web site.

Legislative candidate interviews
Local MEA-MFT teams (at least three members) interview candidates for the legislature, using the MEA-MFT survey to determine the candidates’ positions on issues that matter to MEA-MFT members’ jobs, working conditions and rights, and the people our members serve. Interviews allow local MEA-MFT members to speak directly with candidates about the issues that directly affect MEA-MFT members.

Legislative candidate endorsements
Local interview teams forward their information to members of MEA-MFT's COPE Board. The MEA-MFT COPE Board consists of MEA-MFT's elected board of directors. The COPE Board considers the local recommendation, the voting record, and the public statements and viability of candidacy. COPE Board members then vote on candidate endorsements. MEA-MFT candidate endorsements are issue driven.

Statewide candidate endorsements
Statewide candidates are interviewed by the entire MEA-MFT COPE Board. The COPE Board considers the interviews, public statements and viability of candidacies before voting on which candidates to recommend to MEA-MFT members.

MEA-MFT members receive information about endorsed candidates:
• From local presidents, field consultants, and MEA-MFT elected leaders.
• At local union meetings.
• Through letters, flyers, MEA-MFT Today, and postcards.
• From MEA-MFT field organizers who communicate member-to-member.
• Through e-mails and phone calls.

The voting booth--It’s YOUR CHOICE.
MEA-MFT endorsements are limited to the issues we all agree on, issues that matter to MEA-MFT members’ jobs and working conditions. Members are encouraged to research the candidates and look to other groups for information on other issues they care about.

THE BOTTOM LINE! MEA-MFT COPE offers important information about working issues so members can consider the information when they decide which candidates to support with their vote.