Biden Picks Catherine Lhamon, Enemy of Campus Due Process, To Head Civil Rights Office in Education Dept.
“By putting forward Lhamon for this crucial role, President Biden has signaled that he would rather colleges go back to old, failed policies”
Joe Biden has picked Catherine Lhamon, a holdover from the Obama administration, to head civil rights in his education department.
Advocates of free speech and due process on campus have concerns.
Tyler Kingkade of NBC News reported on Lhamon’s nomination:
Biden will nominate Catherine Lhamon to lead Education Department’s civil rights office
President Joe Biden plans to nominate Catherine Lhamon to lead the Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights. Lhamon held the same position in the Obama administration.
Biden announced Lhamon’s nomination as assistant secretary for civil rights on Thursday. If confirmed, Lhamon would have a highly visible role in determining how the federal government addresses LGBTQ rights, sexual misconduct and racial discrimination in the nation’s K-12 schools and colleges.
Lhamon, a former American Civil Liberties Union attorney, is currently a domestic policy adviser at the White House, focusing on racial justice issues, and was chair of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights from 2017 to 2021. She led the Education Department’s Office of Civil Rights from 2013 to 2017, when the Obama administration emphasized tackling sexual assault on college campuses.
KC Johnson, who has been highly critical of the Obama administration’s record concerning due process on college campuses, criticized the choice of Lhamon.
Perhaps no public figure is more associated with decimating the rights of accused students. An unsurprising selection, given Biden's own perspective on these issues.https://t.co/p3li1gPxzF
— KC Johnson (@kcjohnson9) May 13, 2021
Joe Cohn of the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education has also spoken out:
Statement: Nomination of Catherine Lhamon a return to ‘old, failed policies’
The White House announced today that President Biden will nominate Catherine Lhamon to serve as the Department of Education’s Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights — the same position from which she oversaw efforts to undermine the due process rights of students accused of sexual misconduct during the Obama administration.
Under Lhamon’s leadership, the Office for Civil Rights enforced guidance that gutted due process protections and violated the First Amendment. Lhamon used that guidance to pressure institutions to restrict constitutionally protected speech and disregard basic procedural protections in campus disciplinary hearings.
By putting forward Lhamon for this crucial role, President Biden has signaled that he would rather colleges go back to old, failed policies — policies that have earned rebukes from dozens and dozens of courts to date — than pursue Title IX policies that take the rights of all students into account.
Christina Sommers is also critical:
Terrible choice by Biden. Catherine Lhamon supports campus kangaroo courts. Her department simply made up & enforced fanatical new rules about Title IX. Watch this amazing exchange between Lhamon & Senator L. Alexander here at 2:28 https://t.co/GBFtakbmtr https://t.co/ZmCb9ljJ52
— Christina Sommers (@CHSommers) May 13, 2021
FIRE urges the Senate to reject Catherine Lhamon’s nomination unless she commits to key protections for students in campus Title IX proceedings.
— FIRE (@TheFIREorg) May 14, 2021
Some days it does feel like we’re living through Obama’s third term.
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