Florida’s Charlie Crist chooses the head of the teachers union as his running partner.

Karla Hernández-Mats, the president of the teachers union in Miami-Dade County, has been chosen by Charlie Crist, the Democratic candidate for governor of Florida, as his running mate. This is a blatant indication that Crist intends to put education at the forefront of his campaign against Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis.

Hernández-Mats, who is of Honduran descent, was voted teacher of the year in 2010 after working as a teacher in South Florida for ten years. Since 2016, she has presided over the United Teachers of Dade. She serves as vice president of the American Federation of Teachers, which gave Crist’s campaign $502,800 earlier this month.

At a middle school in Hialeah on Saturday, Crist made Hernández-Mats his choice for lieutenant governor, following a week that saw him secure the party’s nomination to challenge DeSantis in November.

Democrats have reacted angrily to how DeSantis has changed Florida’s public schools, pushing for a vast expansion of vouchers for students to attend private schools, restricting some classroom discussions about race, sexual orientation, and gender identity, and providing parents with legal recourse against teachers who they claim are not adhering to state regulations.

DeSantis is itching to get in the battle. In spite of teachers union resistance, the governor has bragged about his administration’s efforts to open schools more quickly than most other states and to thwart mask and immunization mandates. He frequently extols the virtues of doing away with students’ high-stakes end-of-year exams in favor of more frequent evaluations of their academic progress. DeSantis has also charged educators of introducing “woke ideology” to their charges. DeSantis has entered nonpartisan school board contests this election year, backing approximately 30 candidates who have pledged to support his education agenda locally. The majority of them won on Tuesday.

The DeSantis campaign labeled Hernández-Mats a “anti-parents rights radical” on Twitter as word of Crist’s selection started to circulate Friday afternoon.

Children would have been kept out of school for 18 months if Charlie and Karla had their way, the campaign tweeted. And if they voiced concerns about brainwashing at school board meetings, parents would be sent on an FBI watchlist.

You’re sick of the fanatics who are controlling what we can and cannot say and do because of the cultural wars, right? Moments after Crist named Hernández-Mats as his running companion, she made the statement. “Are you tired of politicians trying to undermine our democracy by acting in an authoritarian manner? We are here today in order to defeat Ron DeSantis and restore respectability to the state of Florida.”

Democrats, though, have claimed that not everyone has shared in the wealth. Florida has transformed into a paradise that many people are no longer able to afford due to some of the nation’s fastest growing housing prices and rentals. Just as hurricane season hits its peak, a property insurance issue threatens to void coverage for millions of homes. LGBTQ Floridians claim the DeSantis administration has exacerbated the state’s hostility against them, while some women claim new abortion restrictions take away their control over their bodies and would compel them to carry through medically dangerous pregnancies.