Governor DeSantis Says Florida Will Not Comply With DOJ Memo Designed To Intimidate Parents

This month, Joe Biden’s Attorney General Merrick Garland has made news with his memo directing the Department of Justice’s involvement in investigations of protesting parents at school board meetings around the nation. Garland issued his directive just five days after receiving a request from the leftist National School Boards Association. The letter specifically requested the DOJ get involved with investigating “threats” and “acts of malice” against elected school board officials and staff. While Garland tried to backtrack from his instructions during testimony before Congress on Thursday, the directive stands.

Republican Florida Governor Ron DeSantis made it known immediately that his administration opposed the proposed federal investigation into school board meetings. DeSantis said on Wednesday that Florida will refuse to comply with Garland’s memo, which requires the FBI and U.S. Attorneys to meet with state and local officials to “facilitate the discussion of strategies” to address the alleged “threats.”

DeSantis stated that if any alleged threats in Florida are directed toward school officials, they can be handled appropriately by local and state law enforcement agencies. He added again that he believes the DOJ memo is more designed to intimidate parents who disagree with the Biden administration’s positions on critical race theory and COVID restrictions in schools than to protect against imagined “threats.”

The governor said that bringing the feds into a local law enforcement issue is like “bringing an 800-pound gorilla” and dropping it in “like a ton of bricks.” He added that much of what the DOJ is doing now is charging people with process crimes, and if they “find an inconsistent statement,” they will prosecute on that basis alone. He said that Florida does not want “to go down that road at all.”

DeSantis said that by refusing to cooperate with “any types of a federal investigation into parents,” the state would be “fortifying the Parents’ Bill of Rights.”

Last week, the governor also promised that Florida would sue the federal government regarding Biden’s mask mandate rules that would affect all employers of more than 100 workers.