On Parents, Biden Sticks to His Foregone Collusions

On Parents, Biden Sticks to His Foregone Collusions

October 13, 2021

The federal government isn't exactly a bastion of efficiency. In fact, entire late-night comedy routines have been written about the glacial pace of Washington. So how is it that Joe Biden's Justice Department managed to snap to attention and mobilize against parents within hours of the National School Board Association's complaint? That's simple, one legal group says, if it was the president's idea to begin with.

How much did the White House know about the NSBA's campaign against local parents -- and when did it know it? That's the question on everyone's minds as more people debate the attorney general's unusually rapid and over-reaching response. "I can tell you from firsthand experience at the Department of Justice," former Trump official Gene Hamilton said, "working with prior attorneys general in other senior levels of government... that type of a timeline simply does not happen ever. Organizations send letters. Members of Congress send letters all the time to the Department of Justice [and] to other federal departments and agencies. No one ever responds. No one ever reacts within a matter of a few days and issues departmental guidance based on the contents of a request from an outside organization."

Hamilton's organization, America First Legal, smelled a rat. They're so convinced that the timing of the DOJ's announcement is fishy that they're pressuring the inspector general to investigate. In a letter to Michael Horowitz, the group points out that the NSBA's letter to the president (which compared outspoken parents to "domestic terrorists") was dated September 29 -- five days before Attorney General Merrick Garland unleashed the full force of the FBI on local communities. The government doesn't even process mail that fast! "Nothing ever moves in the government that quickly," Hamilton agreed, especially when you're talking about "massive cabinet agencies." "Clearly, there was some amount of coordination involved here," he warned. No one gets that kind of special treatment "without some kind of understanding or agreement beforehand."

According to the people Hamilton's group consulted from the inside, "Biden administration officials developed a plan to use a letter from an outside group ('not the usual suspects') as pretext for federal action to chill, deter, and discourage parents from exercising their constitutional rights and privileges," they write to Horowitz. Even though the DOJ's own staff warned that the federal government didn't have the authority to punish parents, they were told that "this was a White House priority and a deliverable would be created." Either the entire matter was precoordinated, America First Legal argues, "...[or] the normal clearance process and standard order both within the department (including legal sufficiency review by the Office of Legal Counsel, the Civil Rights Division, the Criminal Division, the Office of Legal Policy, and other components), and between the department and the White House Counsel's Office and the Office of Management and Budget, were bypassed or corrupted."

The only way the federal government could justify meddling in these local school board meetings was for someone to call for it. The NSBA's letter, asking the administration to jump into the debate and crack down on parents, was exactly the excuse they needed. Deep down, the Democrats -- including Joe Biden -- know that radicalizing education is a losing issue for them. With every school board meeting, every irate parent, every administrative cover-up, their grip on the classroom is slipping -- and they know it. The only way to stop the bleeding is to put an end to this uprising. If that means weaponizing the DOJ against moms and dads, they'll do it. If it means abusing their power and ignoring the plain language of the Constitution, they'll do that too. They'll do anything because they know -- the future of their party's extremism depends on it.

"Garland knows this is dangerous nonsense," NRO's Andrew McCarthy pointed out. Anyone with his background and experience understands that the principle of free speech doesn't yield to anything and or anyone. But then, McCarthy argues, "[the AG's memo] was not a good-faith effort to inform. It was an abusive effort to intimidate."

And let's not forget: this isn't Biden's first rodeo when it comes to collusion. Remember, back when Barack Obama was president, the Democrats turned local retaliation against parents into an art form. In Minnesota, when moms and dads protested the radical LGBT indoctrination in their district, the Southern Poverty Law Center not only labeled the organization a "hate group," they sued the parents and got Obama's DOJ involved. As FRC's Meg Kilgannon explained on Monday's "Washington Watch," "There are all kinds of organizations that are putting tremendous pressure on schools. We've talked about the Southern Poverty Law Center a lot and over the years, and they have a tremendous influence... but organizations like the National Association of School Boards also contribute to that."

At the end of the day, this isn't about violence or threats of violence. (If it were, Senator Josh Hawley, R-Mo., pointed out, the president would be taking America's real crime problem much more seriously.) This is about shutting up parents so that the Left can continue treating schools like indoctrination camps. "There's not even a half-hearted attempt to suggest that this was done for a legitimate law enforcement purpose," Hamilton's colleague, Stephen Miller, said. "It seems quite obvious that it is meant to chill free speech and intimidate parents into silence and into obedience."

Fortunately, parents -- as everyone but the Left seems to know -- have no intentions of going quietly. And neither should anyone who cares about the future of this great nation.


Tony Perkins's Washington Update is written with the aid of FRC senior writers.


Tex Evasion: White House Fights to Stop Pro-life Law

October 13, 2021

Joe Biden may be the Left's puppet on a lot of things, but abortion isn't one of them. In the last two years, the one-time March for Lifer has become a true believer in the fringe wing of his party where destroying babies in the womb is concerned. His DOJ (when it isn't trying to prosecute parents for speaking up at school board meetings) has been frantically fighting to stop Texas's pro-life law from taking effect -- with almost eerie determination.

In this game of legal ping-pong, the Biden administration has been angrily firing off briefs any time a court has agreed to let the law take effect. The latest chapter in this whole drama happened over the weekend, when the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals temporarily lifted a judge's ban on the law while the two sides slug it out in court. The Biden Justice Department was furious, insisting that the state's decision to ban abortion at six weeks is "obvious[ly] unconstitutional" and, as such, shouldn't be allowed to enforce the law while the lawsuit moves forward.

"If Texas's scheme is permissible, no constitutional right is safe from state-sanctioned sabotage of this kind," the Justice Department told the judges on the Fifth Circuit. "Partisans of one stripe or another might cheer these outcomes, but they should horrify anyone committed to the principle that this diverse nation is bound by one Constitution." Of course, that's tame compared some of the Left's other beefs with the Texas law -- like the hardships endured by "pregnant men."

In USA Today, writers bemoan the new and allegedly unjust challenges that Texas's six-week abortion limit puts on people who identify as transgender. In one of craziest arguments for dismantling the law, extremists argue, "Getting an abortion while trans was always hard. In Texas, a new law puts outsized burdens on them." Like everyone else who stumbled across the story, Media Research Center's Matt Philbin almost didn't believe it. "A hearty congratulations to Texas 'trans men and nonbinary people' for really upping their victimhood game," he wrote.

Meanwhile, the real victims -- innocent unborn children -- continue to be the object of Biden's obsession, despite his church leaders' disgust. If he claims to be a devout Catholic, Archbishop Joseph Naumann fired back at the president, "I would urge him to act like one..." And yet, eight months into this killing culture, Biden's pro-abortion fixation rivals that of even Barack Obama's. Nothing, not even the overwhelming opinion of the country he's leading, seems to dissuade this president. Biden, who's "far from governing as a 'personally pro-life politician," NRO's editors note, is everything pro-abortion activists could have hoped..." And everything God-fearing Americans must stand against.


Tony Perkins's Washington Update is written with the aid of FRC senior writers.


Biden One-Ups Obama on Taxpayer-Funded Abortion

October 13, 2021

President Biden's $3.5 trillion "Build Back Better" plan would be more aptly named the Anti-Family Budget Buster. But this bill would do more than just empty the pockets of hardworking American families. Clocking in at roughly 2,300 pages (more than twice the length of Obamacare), this reconciliation package seeks to massively expand taxpayer funding for abortion across America.

Congressional Democrats and the Biden administration are working hard to ensure that this partisan bill will do what a majority of Congress has already refused to do -- eliminate the Hyde Amendment and spend billions of taxpayer dollars on abortion. Unless Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.), one of the very few remaining pro-life Democrats in Congress, can convince his colleagues to add in basic Hyde Amendment language (language that has already passed in annual appropriations bills since 1976), this bill would greatly expand funding for abortion across all 50 states, red and blue alike.

The current draft text of the bill includes a new health care program that would provide health coverage in the 12 states that opted not to expand Medicaid as a part of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). This new program would directly fund abortions in those states -- bypassing the Hyde Amendment, which normally prohibits any funding for abortion through Medicaid in those states. This new program would fund not just abortion procedures, but also transportation to and from abortion facilities. This would mean organizations like Planned Parenthood could use American tax dollars to transport women to get abortions, both within and between states. This feature of the bill is a direct response to pro-life laws being enacted in states like Texas, which recently banned abortion as early as six weeks. In other words, if this bill were to take effect as drafted, the federal government would simply overrun the wishes of states and localities by flying women to states where abortion laws are less restrictive, rendering the laws of pro-life states obsolete.

This bill would also massively expand ACA plans that cover abortion and other various tax subsidies paying for health insurance that includes abortion coverage. It is important to note that our tax dollars are currently already paying for abortions through the ACA. Although some states have opted out of offering abortion coverage on the ACA exchange, billions of dollars in tax subsidies are still being sent to individuals and insurance companies to pay for health plans that cover abortion each year. This bill would expand these subsidies and make them permanent, making it even more likely that the abortion funding provisions in the ACA are here to stay. (To learn which states offer abortion coverage and how much is being spent on abortion plans, check out FRC's resources at obamacareabortion.com.)

Lastly, this bill includes several billion dollars in public health grants that lack pro-life protections. This means that new grants for medical schools, nursing schools, and other graduate medical education can be used to pay for abortions and train our medical professionals to perform abortions. It also includes $50 million for the doula workforce -- including abortion doulas, a new, growing field in the abortion industry that seeks to normalize abortion and treat it like a health care service. There are even research grants that lack pro-life protections, opening up even more funding that could be used for unethical research, such as research that uses aborted fetal tissue.

The latest polling reveals that 58 percent of Americans (and 31 percent of Democrats) oppose taxpayer funding of abortion. Congressional Democrats know that spending billions of dollars in taxpayer funds on abortion is unpopular, which is why they are using a closed-door, partisan process to usher in the largest expansion of abortion funding ever. As Congress continues to debate which provisions of Biden's plan to include in the bill's final text, it is imperative to let them know that the hardworking families of America should not be forced to pay for the barbaric practice of abortion.

To read more about taxpayer funding of abortion and abortion businesses, see here: frc.org/hyde

To see how your state is doing on defunding the abortion industry, see here: frc.org/prolifemaps