Biden Admin LGBT Mandates for School Lunch Program Unlawful, Republican Attorneys General Say

Ryan Smyth (5), and Harper Shea (5), eat lunch at their desks as a coronavirus safety protocol on their first day of kindergarten on September 9, 2020, in Stamford, Conn. / Getty Image
June 15, 2022

More than half of state attorneys general rejected an "unlawful" Biden administration memorandum, which prevented students from receiving federal funding for public school lunches if their district didn’t comply with LGBT mandates.

In a letter to the president, 26 Republican attorneys general demanded the Biden administration withdraw its Department of Agriculture’s Title IX interpretation, which will take billions of dollars in National School Lunch Program funding away from schools that don’t let biological males use the girls' bathroom or compete in girls’ sports. The department's interpretation violated the Administrative Procedures Act, since it was issued as a memorandum rather than a proposed rule for the public to comment on, the attorneys general wrote.

The Biden administration has a history of going around the public when issuing policies, Matt Bowman, a senior counsel for Alliance Defending Freedom, told the Washington Free Beacon. Before the Supreme Court blocked it in January, a mandate without public comment from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration required that workers at businesses with 100 or more employees get vaccinated or submit a negative COVID test weekly.

With the exception of New Hampshire attorney general John Formella, every Republican attorney general joined the coalition, which is led by Tennessee attorney general Herbert Slatery.

The coalition is "evaluating all options to stop this federal overreach," a spokeswoman for Arizona attorney general Mark Brnovich (R.) told the Free Beacon. He said "a federal government bully is more than any child or school should have to contend with." Florida attorney general Ashley Moody (R.) criticized the Biden administration for "using hungry children to advance a political agenda."

Approximately 30 million students benefit from the National School Lunch Program.