Republicans blasted the Biden administration Tuesday following a revelation that Education Secretary Miguel Cardona may have solicited a National School Boards Association (NSBA) letter that compared the actions of some upset parents to domestic terrorists.
Parents Defending Education, a group dedicated to ridding schools of “harmful agendas” such as Critical Race Theory, published an email exchange Tuesday between NSBA board member Marnie Maldonado and NSBA Secretary-Treasurer Kristi Swett from October 5-6 of last year. In the exchange, Swett claims then-NSBA interim executive director Chip Slaven said “he was writing a letter to provide information to the White House, from a request by Secretary Cordona [sic].”
“Secretary Cardona needs to explain himself to the American people. Parents aren’t the enemy, and it would be inexcusable if he solicited that kind of rhetoric from the National School Board Association,” Sen. Ben Sasse (R-NE) said in a statement Tuesday. “The baseless, dishonest allegations of terrorism in the NSBA letter are vile because they’re designed to silence important discussions about education.”
“Cabinet officials shouldn’t be joining wild-eyed radicals’ attempts to squash debate. Irresponsible accusations about ‘domestic terrorism’ are political hackery, not public service. The Biden administration needs to take a big step back from fanaticism and end the needless politicization of every aspect of our lives,” Sasse continued.
A spokesperson for Education Department denied that Cardona solicited the NSBA letter in a statement to Fox News, saying, “While the Secretary did not solicit a letter from NSBA, to understand the views and concerns of stakeholders, the Department routinely engages with students, teachers, parents, district leaders and education associations.”
Republicans piled on Cardona following the release of the NSBA board members’ email exchange, arguing that the email exchange warrants further investigation into the origins of the NSBA letter which the Justice Department later used to justify a memo directing the FBI to crack down on school board meetings. School board meetings erupted last summer with parents upset over the inclusion of subjects such as Critical Race Theory and transgender ideology in their children’s school.
“Sec. Cardona must testify before Congress about the letter he solicited that labeled parents as ‘domestic terrorists.’ Dems use their majority to cover up for the Biden admin, but Republicans will use every tool at our disposal to hold them accountable.” House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) said.
Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR) tweeted: “Are you a parent frustrated by school closures and toxic critical race theory being pushed on your kids? The Biden administration thinks you’re a domestic terrorist.”
GOP whip Rep. Steve Scalise (LA) added: “Biden’s Education Secretary solicited the letter from the National School Boards Association comparing parents to terrorists that the DOJ then used to target parents. We need Congressional hearings NOW.”
Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO) said: “The truth emerges – the Biden Administration ASKED FOR the infamous letter calling parents domestic terrorists, and then used it to gin up their war on parents with the FBI. Shameful[.]”
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