Republican Texas Sen. Ted Cruz grilled U.S. Deputy Attorney General Kristen Clarke at a Wednesday hearing for the Department of Justice (DOJ) allegedly treating parents as domestic terrorists for opposing Critical Race Theory (CRT).
U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland issued an Oct. 4 memorandum ordering the FBI to meet with local leaders across the country to address potential threats and harassment against school board members, teachers and staff at future board meetings. Cruz challenged Clarke on the DOJ allegedly treating parents opposing CRT as “domestic terrorists.”
Clarke told the Texas senator that the memo responds to threats against “public servants” which she said contradicts “our nation’s core values” and that parents have the First Amendment right to “challenge” school boards on the content being taught to their children.
“Do you believe parents objecting at school boards are domestic terrorists?” Cruz asked. (RELATED: Republican AGs Join Forces To Warn Garland Against ‘Weaponizing’ FBI To Target Parents)
“I don’t, senator,” Clarke replied. The assistant Attorney General declined to answer on whether she participated in discussions about the memo before it was issued.
Cruz defended parents across the country that have stood up to the teaching of CRT, which holds that America is fundamentally racist, yet teaches every person to view every social interaction and person in terms of race. Its adherence pursues “antiracism” through the end of merit, objective truth and the adoption of race-based policies.
The Texas senator pressed Clarke on whether she holds Black Lives Matter rioters and antifa to the same standard as parents objecting to CRT.
“It’s amazing, you’re not willing to condemn people who are murdering police officers and firebombing cities, because your politics aligns with them, but at the same time when it comes to parents at school boards you’re perfectly comfortable with calling a mom at a PTA meeting a domestic terrorist,” Cruz said.
“Ms. Clarke, with all due respect, this demonstrates why the Democrat proposal to take someone with as long of a partisan record as you have and to put you in charge of striking down any voting rights law in the country that you disagree with is nothing but a partisan power grab.”
During an Oct. 5 Senate hearing with Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco, Republican Missouri Sen. Josh Hawley said the order is “weaponizing the federal bureaucracy” to target those that disagree with the administration politically. Monaco denied that the administration is intervening in school board meetings and only addressing ongoing and potential threats against school employees.
The National School Board Association (NSBA) urged President Joe Biden’s administration to enforce federal statutes, including the Gun-Free School Zones Act and the USA PATRIOT Act, to prevent threats and violence that could be “the equivalent to a form of domestic terrorism” against school board members, teachers and other employees in a Sept. 30 letter.