2022 stealth Republican School Board takeover attempt
This year's school board election has been targeted for takeover – as have others across the country – by anti-education, anti-democratic interests with GOP backing, who have put forward a slate of far-right candidates under the slogan "Better Board, Better Schools".
From EQV Analytics:
Curtis Hrischuk, an evangelical Catholic, reveals himself on Facebook to be an anti-semitic, climate-denying, anti-vaxx creationist in favor of starving local governments (including our public schools) of revenue.
Joetta MacMiller is listed as a member of The New Group of Patriots, which describes its mission as "to destroy the socialist takeover of our lives and the American dream." She's listed as a participant in the notoriously homophobic NC Values Coalition's upcoming 'Mama Bear Workshop,' which states that "Protecting our children from harmful curriculum and indoctrination in school is a battle for their very hearts and minds."
EQV doesn't have much on Valarie Jarvis, but that's likely because she doesn't seem to have an online presence and has failed to respond to questionniaires -- issues which rather indicate her lack of anything useful to contribute.
Christopher Burns is, according to EQV, an independent contractor "with zero employees" and who "pocketed over $30,000 in subsequently forgiven Paycheck Protection Program loans in 2020/2021".
Gayathri Rajaraman announced that she’s running for the school board at the behest of Immanuel Jarvis (Valarie's husband). Like Burns, she has a scant social media presence but told the INDY she doesn’t think younger students should learn about topics like the historical racism upon which the nation was largely built.
NC state law requires School Board elections to be "nonpartisan", which means that candidates' party affiliations are not shown on the ballot. Since this law has somehow been selectively countermanded in some GOP-heavy counties but not in any that lean Democratic, it seems clear that this is to help facilitate Republican infiltration into Democratic-leaning districts without allowing movement in the other direction.
Liberal and progressive voters who often default to Democratic candidates may accidentally vote for one or more of these wingnut ringers, as some of them sound very plausible on the surface and will have some name-familiarity due to campaign advertising.
- NC Grassroots Movement: MacMiller, Hrischuk
News (to file)
- 2022-05-13 EQVA: Anti-Immigration Group's Director Bankrolls Durham GOP School Board Candidates ...«a major cash contributor to four of the five candidates is a director of NumbersUSA, an "immigration reduction organization" that blames immigrants for America's "deteriorating quality of life, lost jobs, depressed wages, sprawl, lost open spaces and increasing restrictions on individual liberty."» See: Laura Gutman @ NumbersUSA
- via: «The poll greeter shown here promoting the @BetterDPS GOP slate of Durham school board candidates is none other than Laura Gutman, director of anti-immigrant @NumbersUSA and donor of anti-immigrant cash to their campaigns»
- IW: How Conservatives Are Stealthily Trying to Win Durham School Board Seats «Not one of Durham’s three most influential political action committees has endorsed any of the five GOP candidates who are running for seats on the county school board, including the nonpartisan Friends of Durham (FOD) PAC.»
- 2022-04-14 9StJ: Nonpartisan school board candidates downplay partisan ties
- discussion: Nextdoor
- 2022-04-13 NCPW: GOP’s “stealth slate” of candidates seeks to shift school board balance of power in one of NC’s most Democratic counties
- 2022-03-16 EQVA: Can the GOP Take Over Blue Durham County's Board of Education? (They're Betting On It)
- 2022-04-10 EQV Analytics: «Ooh, ooh, cool! I'm being called a groomer and a neo-nazi *right now* by some Durham GOP nut job on a Facebook Live freakout. I'm internet famous! Dude's a mite uptight about me blowing QAnon @BetterDPS's cover.» #ncpol https://www.facebook.com/watch/live/?v=1168153530695099
- 2022-03-13 EQVA Tweet/video: «Gaya Rajaraman, a member of the stealth @BetterDPS slate of radical GOP candidates for Durham School Board running in the 'nonpartisan' May 17 election, accidentally lets slip that she was recruited to run by the Durham County GOP chair, Immanuel Jarvis.»
- Better Board, Better Schools: d1: Curtis Hrischuk, d2: Chris Burns, d3: Gayathri Rajaraman, cdB: Joetta MacMiller, d4: Valarie Jarvis
- domain was registered 2022-02-24
- discussion: Nextdoor (main) - the conservoids are suddenly in favor of "drastic change"