GRASSLEY: Parents should be able to express frustration with school boards

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Last week, all Republican members of the Senate Judiciary Committee sent Attorney General Garland a letter. We said he should withdraw his memo from October 4th that made parents feel like domestic terrorists for going to local school board meetings. We’ve all agreed that true criminal acts should be prosecuted.



Unfortunately, the Attorney General is going in the wrong direction. A whistleblower revealed the FBI’s Counterterrorism Division is involved in this and is keeping track of what goes on at the local level, criminal or not.


This flies in the face of what AG Garland testified to the Judiciary Committee.


The attorney general has insisted that his instructions to law enforcement have nothing to do with stopping parents from criticizing school boards and that he doesn’t think parents are domestic terrorists.  But his own FBI reads his memo just as we do.


Last week, one of my colleagues on the Judiciary Committee defended the attorney general and his memo. He talked about school board members getting angry emails and being threatened. If the facts discussed by my colleague rise to being crimes, they sound like the sort of things local law enforcement can handle just fine on their own. But we should all agree that the FBI’s Counterterrorism Division should have nothing to do with it.


If you’re a parent who is upset with how your child’s school is being run, you should be able to say so to the school board. But will the FBI’s Counterterrorism Division keep a record of what you say at that school board meeting?


I’ve gotten many letters from constituents worried about this sort of thing. Mr. Attorney General, parents are not domestic terrorists. You’ve said so yourself. Now prove you mean it.


Call off the FBI’s Counterterrorism Division. Withdraw your October 4th memo.


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