In this week’s Congressional Oversight hearings, Attorney General Merrick Garland was asked about the infamous letter which labeled parents who express opposition to a school board’s agenda as “domestic terrorists.”
As my colleague Nick Arama reported:
Under questioning earlier today, Attorney General Merrick Garland admitted that he had created a task force to look into alleged threats based upon a letter that he received from the National School Board’s Association. When specifically asked about the data that he was basing his decision on, he said, “The National School Board Association represents thousands of school boards and school board members and says that there are these kinds of threats.” So it sounded like he had largely made his decision based upon the letter of the NSBA, he didn’t identify any data showing real threats in that exchange during questioning.
Arama went on to analyze a Free Beacon investigation with representatives of The National School Board Association (NSBA) where the NSBA admitted that their president and CEO had consulted with the White House on this letter before it was sent, and that it was sent to the White House without prior approval by the NSBA board. Regardless, the conflict of interest that arises from the White House dictating what the Department of Justice is tasked to investigate is clear.
After much fallout from the letter and the testimony pointing to NSBA coordinating with the White House, the organization has issued… wait for it… an apology.
BREAKING: NSBA apologizes for letter that served as basis for @TheJusticeDept AG #Garland’s directive for FBI to target parents as “domestic terrorists,” including #LoudounScandal outrageously labeling dad of rape victim as poster-boy of domestic terrorism. Will the AG reverse? pic.twitter.com/VkFJxKIfpK
— Chip Roy (@chiproytx) October 23, 2021
The letter reads:
As you all know, there has been extensive media and other attention recently around our letter to President Biden regarding threats and acts of violence against school board members. We wanted to write to you directly to address the matter.
On behalf of NSBA, we regret and apologize for the letter. To be clear, the safety of school board members, other public school officials and educators, and students is our top priority, and there remains important work to be done on this issue. However, there was no justification for some of the language included in the letter. We should have had a better process in place to allow for consultation on communication of this significance. We apologize also for the strain and stress this situation has caused you and your organizations.
This is not only amazing on its face, but it is a clear slap in the face to the White House and Attorney General Garland.
As we’ve reiterated since the letter was sent, we deeply value not only the work of local school boards that make important contributions within our communities, but also the voices of parents, who should and must continue to be heard when it comes to decisions about their children’s education, health, and safety.
Slow golf clap. While it’s commendable that they reinforce the importance of a parent’s role in their child’s education and their right to be part of the decisions about said education, this full-throated support of parents should have been issued by NSBA months ago, especially after the mess in Loudoun County, instead of the condemnation they sent. This is a self-inflicted wound, and something they should have been smart enough to avoid.
We are going to do better going forward. We are engaged in a formal review of our processes and procedures. We will announce specific improvements soon to ensure there is improved coordination and consultation among our staff, our board, and our members across the country. The review will include not only the proceedings leading to the letter, but also other related concerns raised by members even before the letter was sent.
We will have more to share with you soon as our review continues. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us. Thank you.
The NSBA is clearly distancing itself from the controversy created by the Biden White House and Garland. The Attorney General clearly testified that it was this very letter that was the basis for his mounting a task force that would target innocent parents who simply want a voice and input on the quality and direction of their child’s education.
Now that Garland has no supporting evidence, will he backtrack and apologize as well? He has been radio silent about an Indiana school board member physically attacking a parent, so I wouldn’t hold my breath.