Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., has been at odds with Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel on a wide range of issues for years. Yet with thousands of teachers walking off the job in the "windy city" Monday, the GOP vice presidential nominee said he stands shoulder to shoulder with his former House colleague.
"Rahm and I have not agreed on every issue or on a lot of issues, but Mayor Emanuel is right today in saying that this teacher's union strike is unnecessary and wrong," Ryan said during an Oregon fundraiser. "We know that Rahm is not going to support our campaign, but on this issue and this day we stand with Mayor Rahm Emanuel," he added.
Chicago is the nation's third largest school district. Teachers there officially went on strike after contract negotiations between unions representing them and the city government
stalled, leaving nearly half a million children left in limbo.
Ryan claims the strike raises questions over where President Obama's loyalties really lie.
"We stand with the children and we stand with the families and the parents of Chicago because education reform, that's a bipartisan issue. This does not have to divide the two parties. And so, we were going to ask, where does President Obama stand? Does he stand with his former Chief of Staff Mayor Rahm Emanuel, with the children and the parents, or does he stand with the union?" Ryan asked.
Earlier Monday, the White House insisted their position is crystal clear.
"Our principal concern is for the students and his principal concern is for the students and families who are affected by the situation and we hope that both sides are able to come together to settle this quickly and in the best interest of Chicago's students," White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said.