Why the GOP Should Worry About Hillary Clinton’s Poll Numbers
With the 2016 general election a little less than 16 months away, key polling data for Hillary Clinton shows that her numbers look a lot like President Barack Obama’s in 2012
and could be bad news for Republicans.
In addition to discussing women and family issues on Monday, Mrs. Clinton is expected to support Mr. Obama’s plans to extend overtime pay to workers and strengthen collective bargaining. She will also emphasize policies that would help the largely female members of the A.F.T., including pushing for paid family leave and affordable childcare, according to aides.
A major teachers’ union on Saturday voted to make an early endorsement of Hillary Rodham Clinton, a lift to her presidential campaign as she tries to fend off a stronger-than-expected challenge from the left.
The endorsement from the American Federation of Teachers was not a surprise. The group is led by Randi Weingarten, a longtime ally of Mrs. Clinton, and it backed her in her losing primary battle against Barack Obama in 2008.
But the union is giving her its support again at an opportune moment for Mrs. Clinton, just before her first major speech on the economy, scheduled for Monday, which is seen as an attempt, in part, to neutralize the criticism leveled at her by her leading challenger, Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont.
Education policy remains one of the few areas of unsettled debate within the Democratic Party. President Obama’s education agenda has often infuriated the teachers’ unions, and last year, the head of the National Education Association, another union representing teachers, called for the secretary of education, Arne Duncan, to be fired.
Advocates of changes to the system, including some major Democratic donors, consider Mr. Obama an ally and have been pressuring Mrs. Clinton to adopt Mr. Obama’s posture. But in meetings with the A.F.T. last month, Mrs. Clinton said that teachers shouldn’t be the “scapegoat” for society’s ills.
After that meeting — members also heard from Mr. Sanders and Martin O’Malley, the former Maryland governor — Ms. Weingarten praised Mrs. Clinton’s performance and detailed responses to members’ concerns.