Republicans on the House Judiciary Committee are demanding that Chairman Jerrold Nadler hold hearings investigating the involvement of the Justice Department’s National Security Division in directives associated with Attorney General Merrick Garland’s Oct. 4 memo targeting “harassment, intimidation, and threats of violence” directed at education officials.
“It is unclear what threat the Department believes American parents pose to our national security,” the Republicans write in a letter to Nadler, and “in testimony before the Committee, Attorney General Garland was unable or unwilling to explain why he directed the National Security Division to participate in this ill-conceived endeavor.” The letter, obtained exclusively by the Daily Caller, was spearheaded by Ranking Member Jim Jordan, and signed by every Republican on the Committee.
The Republicans are asking to subpoena Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco and Acting Assistant Attorney General Mark Lesko, head of the National Security Division, for the hearing. They describe “collusion” between the Biden administration and the National School Board Association (NSBA), which asked Biden to consider rowdy behavior, including some threats, akin to “domestic terrorism.” After advocacy group Parents Defending Education obtained emails showing that CEO Chip Slaven spoke with White House staff about language in the letter, the NSBA apologized and walked back the letter.
Monaco appeared in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee on Oct. 5. She testified that the memo was sent “to address threats, to address violence, and to address law enforcement issues … which is the job of the Justice Department.”
In a press release accompanying the memo, the Department of Justice named its National Security Division as one of the participants in a task force addressing the listed concerns. The National Security Division was established in 2006 in a re-authorization of the PATRIOT Act.
Garland appeared before the House Judiciary Committee on Oct. 21 and the Senate Judiciary Committee on Oct. 27. During those hearings, he denied conflicts of interest associated with his son-in-law’s education company, and pledged to provide a report detailing the threats of violence that made his Oct. 4 memo necessary. (RELATED: ‘Thank God You Are Not On The Supreme Court’: Cotton Slams Garland)
“The fundamental issue is what in the world is the National Security Division doing involved here,” Jordan told the Daily Caller. “The whole timing of everything, the NSBA sent the letter on Sept. 29 and then there was a five day turnaround [to the Garland letter], that’s an unbelievable turnaround.”
“The goal was to chill the speech of parents at school board meetings.”
Read the letter here: