by Kendall Tietz
Over 100 conservative groups and leaders are calling on Education Secretary Miquel Cardona to resign over allegations that he collaborated with the National School Boards Association (NSBA) to draft the infamous letter equating parents to domestic terrorists.
The Conservative Action Project (CAP), along with 120 conservative groups and leaders, released a letter Monday calling on Cardona to resign immediately, following reports that he worked with the NSBA and the Department of Justice (DOJ) to silence parents from speaking out about their concerns at America’s public schools, citing “threats” they posed to school boards.
School boards have been battlegrounds for culture wars over mask rules, COVID-19 vaccinations, schools reopening, Critical Race Theory (CRT), gender ideology and remote learning. The Monday letter also calls on Congress to further investigate the NSBA letter “to ensure any other Biden administration officials who were inappropriately involved are held accountable.”
“Given his apparent role in this effort to infringe on the rights of concerned parents, it is clear that Secretary Cardona can no longer credibly lead the U.S. Department of Education nor play a significant role in implementing federal education policy,” the CAP letter said.
A late September letter from the NSBA asked the Biden administration to use statutes such as the USA PATRIOT Act to stop threats and violence directed toward school board members over parents’ actions that could be “the equivalent to a form of domestic terrorism and hate crimes,” according to the now-deleted letter.
On Jan. 11, reports surfaced that Cardona allegedly solicited the NSBA letter comparing parents to domestic terrorists, according to emails obtained by Parents Defending Education (PDE). The emails show collaboration between the Department of Education (DOE), DOJ and NSBA, which advocated for the federal government to monitor and intervene in the activities of concerned parents.
“Chip [Slaven, then-interim executive director of the NSBA,] told the officers he was writing a letter to provide information to the White House, from a request by Secretary Cordona,” NSBA Secretary-Treasurer Kristi Swett told NSBA member Marnie Maldonado in early October 2021.
A DOE spokesperson previously told the DCNF that Cardona “did not solicit a letter from NSBA.”
Four days after the NSBA letter was sent, Attorney General Merrick Garland issued a memorandum that called on the FBI to “use its authority” against parents who threaten or use violence against public school officials.
“Secretary Cardona’s involvement in the conception of this letter is especially alarming considering that it was subsequently used by the Department of Justice to legitimize a new initiative cracking down on vaguely defined ‘threats’ to school boards — and threatening the First Amendment rights of parents to speak freely and petition their government,” CAP’s letter said.
“If the NSBA’s letter was indeed crafted at Cardona’s request, this would mean that the DOJ’s action was based on a ‘crisis’ that the Biden administration itself created,” the letter said.
“They have numerous serious reasons to be upset at the way public school officials have acted in recent months, including their unnecessary and harmful closure of schools, implementation of onerous and needless COVID-19 restrictions like student mask mandates, and injection of left-wing propaganda like critical race theory and gender ideology into the classroom,” CAP’s letter said. “The Biden administration’s vilification of these parents is contemptible.”
– – –
Kendall Tietz is a reporter at Daily Caller News Foundation.
Photo “National School Boards Association meeting” by The National School Boards Association.