The American public has long been concerned with the potential misuse of federal resources by government agencies, and the recent subpoena of FBI Director Christopher Wray by House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Jordan has only increased their worries. On Friday, Jordan issued a subpoena requiring Wray to turn over documents and communications related to the FBI’s “misuse of federal criminal and counterterrorism resources” to target parents at school board meetings.
The subpoena comes in response to a letter sent by the National School Boards Association (NSBA) to Attorney General Merrick Garland in 2021, which called for the use of measures such as the Patriot Act to address disruptive behavior—even if it was nonviolent and not threatening—at school board meetings. Garland responded with a memo directing the FBI to partner with local law enforcement and U.S. attorneys to identify parental threats at school board meetings and to “prosecute them when appropriate.”
Jordan is now demanding documents related to the Justice Department’s task force that focused on identifying school board threats, as well as all documents related to “both formal and informal recommendations” created or relied upon by FBI employees relating to meetings with U.S. attorneys offices. He is also requesting documents related to the “EDUOFFICIALS threat tag” and all documents and communications sent or received by specific FBI agents.
Whistleblowers have reported that the FBI labeled dozens of investigations into parents with this threat tag and opened investigations with the “EDUOFFICIALS” threat in every region of the country and relating to all types of educational settings. In one case, the FBI investigated a mother for allegedly telling a school board member “we are coming for you”—simply because she belonged to a “right wing mom’s group” and was a gun owner. In another, the FBI investigated a father opposed to COVID masks because he supposedly fit the bill of an “insurrectionist” and “rails against the government”—claims which the person later admitted they had “no specific information or observations of…any crimes or threats.”
Jordan is currently reviewing whistleblower information that suggests the White House “colluded with the National School Boards Association to manufacture a pretext for the use of federal law enforcement authorities against parents” since 2021. He has now issued a subpoena to Wray, as well as to Attorney General Merrick Garland and Education Secretary Miguel Cardona, to obtain the necessary documents and information to continue his investigation.
The White House has pledged to work in “good faith” with Jordan during his investigation, and the FBI has stated that it “has never been in the business of investigating speech or policing speech at school board meetings or anywhere else, and we never will be.”
House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Jordan has taken action to ensure that federal resources are not being misused to target parents at school board meetings. His subpoena of FBI Director Christopher Wray, Attorney General Merrick Garland, and Education Secretary Miguel Cardona for documents related to the matter is an important step in determining the truth of the situation. By investigating these claims, Jordan is ensuring that the First Amendment right to free speech is protected and that the American people can trust their government.