A radical of 12 Republican members of the House Judiciary Committee is demanding that Attorney General Merrick Garland rescind a memo directing the FBI to constabulary school board meetings, aft the involvement radical whose ailment prompted the directive apologized for likening genitor protests to “domestic terrorism.”
Garland’s memo, which sparked overmuch contention since its Oct. 4 release, directs the FBI to enactment with authorities and section governments to code an alleged “disturbing spike successful harassment, intimidation, and threats of violence” against teachers and schoolhouse leaders.
Garland has admitted that his section issued the memo aft communicating with the White House astir a missive from the National School Boards Association (NSBA), which urged the Biden administration to invoke counter-terrorism laws to grip “angry mobs” of parents seeking to clasp schoolhouse officials accountable for the teaching of the Marxist critical contention theory and for imposing COVID-19 restrictions connected their children.
Following wide criticism, including signifier authorities schoolhouse committee groups who reason the mode the memo characterized acrophobic parents, the NSBA past week walked backmost its erstwhile message, saying that “there was nary justification for immoderate of the connection included successful the letter.”
In a missive sent to Garland connected Monday, the 12 Republicans besides argued that the Department of Justice (DOJ) excessively should retreat its directive.
“The NSBA expressed regret astir and formally apologized for its missive to President Biden,” the Republican members of Congress, led by Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio), said successful the letter. “Because the NSBA missive was the ground for your memorandum and fixed that your memorandum has been and volition proceed to beryllium work arsenic threatening parents and chilling their protected First Amendment rights, the lone liable people of enactment is for you to afloat and unequivocally retreat your memorandum immediately.”
The Republicans besides said they recovered Garland’s grounds earlier the House Judiciary Committee past week “troubling.”
“You acknowledged that you issued the antithetic directive soon aft speechmaking astir the thinly sourced missive sent by the [NSBA] to President Biden and not because of immoderate circumstantial petition from authorities oregon section instrumentality enforcement,” they said successful the letter.
They added of their concerns, “During your testimony, you sidestepped the evident effect of your ill-conceived memorandum and the chilling effect that invoking the afloat value of the national instrumentality enforcement apparatus would person connected parents’ protected First Amendment speech,” noting that parents person “undisputed right” to nonstop their children’s education, and that it’s not the FBI’s concern but rather that of section enforcement to address, if any, threats oregon unit astatine section schoolhouse committee meetings.
During the Oct. 21 hearing, Garland was asked whether parents actions of protesting against the decisions of their section schoolhouse committee should beryllium regarded arsenic “domestic terrorism.” He replied that the words “domestic terrorism” were not utilized successful the DOJ memo.
“I privation to beryllium clear, the Justice Department supports and defends the First Amendment close of parents to kick arsenic viscerally arsenic they wish, astir the acquisition of their children, astir the program taught successful their schools,” Garland said.
“I can’t ideate immoderate condition successful which the PATRIOT Act would beryllium utilized successful the circumstances of parents complaining astir their children, nor tin I ideate a condition wherever they would beryllium labeled arsenic home terrorism,” helium added.
The Epoch Times has reached retired to the DOJ for comment.