Looks Like It Was Biden’s Education Secretary Who Proposed the “Parents as Terrorists” Idea to the NSBA
[guest post by JVW]
In one of Dana’s Weekend Open Threads from this past fall we discussed the ongoing kerfuffle and fallout about the Biden Justice Department acting upon a letter from the National School Boards Association which compared parents who spoke out, sometimes heatedly, at local school board meetings to domestic terrorists. The Justice Department ended up directing the FBI to investigate alleged “violent threats” against school board members, most of which were overblown or possibly contrived. Once word of this power play got out, the backlash was quick and severe with the NSBA apologizing and taking a definite hit in membership levels. For his part, Attorney General Merrick Garland refused to apologize or rescind his directive, so theoretically it is still in effect to this day.
Dana’s weekend item made clear that the Biden White House was involved in coordinating the drafting of the letter with the NSBA, with employees at both the Education Department and Justice Department participating in the cobbling together of this memo before it was eventually sent to President Biden on September 29. Five days later, the notorious Garland directive was issued. But today we have learned that Secretary of Education Miguel Cordona himself helped set the process in motion:
Education Secretary Miguel Cardona solicited the National School Boards Association (NSBA) letter to the Biden administration that compared parents of students to domestic terrorists, according to emails obtained by Parents Defending Education.
NSBA secretary-treasurer Kristi Swett wrote in an email on October 5th that NSBA interim CEO Chip Slaven “told the officers he was writing a letter to provide information to the White House, from a request by Secretary Cardona.”
“Should this allegation be true, it would reveal that this administration’s pretextual war on parents came from the highest levels,” Nicole Neily, president of Parents Defending Education, told Fox News, which first reported the emails. “If Secretary Cardona was truly involved in this ugly episode, it is a significant breach of public trust, and he should be held accountable.”
To recap, what seems to have transpired is the following: A left-wing activist Secretary of Education contacted executives at NSBA to suggest they draft the notorious letter as a pretext for the Justice Department to get involved. The draft was circulated among staff at NSBA, but also shared with select members of the Education and Justice Departments for their input. The final version was sent to President Biden — without the authorization of the NSBA Board of Directors, it should be noted — who then ordered the Attorney General of the United States to address the group’s concerns. Oh, and by the way, the President of the NSBA, Viola Garcia, then found herself nominated to a federal board which sets policy for student performance. How about that?
Clearly there needs to be some housecleaning at NSBA, as this fiasco is likely to seriously disrupt the operations of this agency. But it also seems obvious that the Biden Administration, especially the Education and Justice Departments, are due for some investigatory reckoning very soon, though that probably won’t come for another year. If it is true that Secretary Cardona himself proposed that the Patriot Act be used to silence dissenters from Critical Race Theory or gender identification obsessions, then he needs to go. If people close to Attorney General Garland participated in this brazen abuse of government power, they too should be directed to the unemployment office. And Mr. Garland himself should strongly consider whether he truly has the wisdom or courage to serve as our nation’s top lawman during these highly divisive times.