Most of Democratic gubernatorial hopeful Zephyr Teachout’s more than 45,000 signatures to get on the September primary ballot came from the New York City area. But at least 600 came from Buffalo.

The President of the Buffalo Teachers Federation, Phil Rumore, said the BTF decided to pass petitions for Teachout and her Lt. Governor candidate Tim Wu, to send a message to Governor Cuomo.

“He’s supported charter schools, cut funding for public schools, and has said failing schools should face the death penalty. Our members don’t support those positions,” Rumore said.

The union’s move will likely raise some eyebrows especially in Western New York. Cuomo’s Lt. Governor Candidate, Kathy Hochul, was put on the ticket, in part, to help the Governor win some of the Western New York votes he lost to Carl Paladino four years ago.

“It’s a message I’m sure teachers across the state feel need to be sent,” Rumore said.

It’s a stance other union leaders are taking note of.

“I’m certainly interested to see if Buffalo’s support for Teachout could start a trend,” said Rochester Teachers Association President Adam Urbanski.

Urbanski said the RTA typically defers to the New York State United Teachers Union in statewide races but will speak to the BTF and NYSUT, and possibly raise the issue with RTA members in September.

“Governor Cuomo has name recognition and big bucks, but many teachers have been displeased with him,” Urbanski said.

Much of that displeasure comes from the poor rollout of the Common Core.  It’s something Rumore called a factor in his union’s decision to back Teachout.

“It’s teaching our kids to death.  I call it institutionalized child abuse,” said Rumore.

When asked if the BTF would support Republican Rob Astorino if Cuomo and Hochul make it through the primary unscathed, Rumore didn’t rule it out.

“That’s a decision we really haven’t had any discussions on that but it’s a possibility, let me put it that way,” Rumore added.