Illinois Education Association pulls endorsement of Rep. Mike Bost following Jan. 6 Insurrection

By George Wiebe, Staff Reporter

The Illinois Education Association and the Illinois Political Action Committee for Education officially pulled their backing of fourth term congressman Mike Bost. 

In their publicly released letter to Bost, the IEA said their decision was a result of the congressman’s vote against certifying the election results on Jan. 6. 

The IEA has endorsed Bost since 2016. 

Advertisement

When Congress met to confirm President Joe Biden’s electoral college victory Rep. Bost, along with 138 other House Republicans, voted to overturn the results of several states, including Arizona and Pennsylvania.

Only two of Illinois’ eighteen congressional representatives voted against certifying the election results, the second being newly elected Rep. Mary Miller of the 15th district.

On Dec. 16, SIU’s Faculty Association and Graduate Assistants United co-wrote the Illinois Education Association, which represents over 135,000 current and former education employees across the state. 

In their joint letter to the IEA, the FA and GAU condemned the continued endorsement, writing, “The FA and GAU have long been convinced that Bost is hostile to the values that we, as educators, work to protect.”

Anne Fletcher, president of SIUC’s Faculty Association, said the FA and GAU had been “overwhelmingly outvoted” when the IEA had decided to re-endorse Bost last fall.

In December the IEA wrote Bost asking him to “begin to help heal our nation by supporting the electoral college vote.”

Five days after the insurrection at the Capitol, the IEA once again wrote to Bost officially cutting ties saying: “Your decision will make it impossible for IPACE to continue our political support for you moving forward.”

“Our feeling is that a government official’s social and political actions are inextricably linked to their stands on education,” Fletcher said. I can say now that the IEA’s action restored my faith in grassroots efforts and in the efficacy of unions.”

When asked for a comment Bost’s press secretary replied with the congressman’s official statement on his house.gov press release in which he said “I wasn’t seeking to overturn the results of the 2020 election, I was upholding the constitutional principles that educators across America instill in their students each and every day.”

(See more: Bost Statement on the Electoral College)

Bost said the Arizona and Pennsylvania elections did not comply with their state’s laws, something officials in both states as well as the Supreme Court have dismissed outright. 

Top election officials, Katie Hobbs, Secretary of State of Arizona, and Kathy Boockvar, Secretary of State of Pennsylvania, stand by the legitimacy of their state’s elections.

“I value the work that Southern Illinois’ educators do to educate and inspire our youth, and will continue to support their very important mission,” Bost said in his statement.

A petition to recall Mike Bost from public office reached 2,275 signatures as of Jan 25.

(See more: Petition to recall  Mike Bost)

Staff reporter George Wiebe can be reached at  [email protected] 

To stay up to date with all your southern Illinois news, follow the Daily Egyptian on Facebook and Twitter.

Advertisement