‘The DOJ will come after you’ if they disagree with your position, subpoenaed nonprofit says

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The Department of Justice (DOJ) has issued a subpoena to Eagle Forum, an Alabama-based conservative nonprofit, for exercising its constitutionally protected free speech rights in a case involving treatment transgender for children.

Eagle Forum had lobbied the Alabama legislature to pass a law that prevents children from receiving sex-altering treatments. Earlier this year, the legislature passed the Alabama Vulnerable Child Compassion and Protection Act, which bans hormone therapies, puberty blockers and surgeries to change a minor’s biological sex. Left-leaning organizations sued the state, and the DOJ intervened in the lawsuit, saying the new law violated the equal protection clause of the 14th Amendment.

The DOJ then issued a subpoena to Eagle Forum, which is not even a party to the lawsuit. The subpoena asks for five years of Eagle Forum records on anything to do with the issue of gender dysphoria.

In an interview on NTD’s “Capitol Report,” Kris Ullman, president of Eagle Forum, said the DOJ is suing them because of their dissenting opinion on the issue of gender reassignment treatments for children. The ministry wants to “make an example” of the small nonprofit, she said.

Ullman points out that the issue of puberty blockers “isn’t really the key” to the case. The problem at its heart is that the DOJ is trying to “harass” a nonprofit group into shutting up because the feds “don’t like their position” on a specific issue.

“Whether you’re right-wing or left-wing, you should be concerned that the DOJ will sue you if they don’t agree with your free speech rights, the position you’ve taken. The right to petition, the right to freedom of expression, the right to assembly, all these rights are at issue in this case.

Lobby nonprofits

Eagle Forum has filed a motion to quash the DOJ subpoena. According to Ullman, a hearing is scheduled for Oct. 14 when a judge will decide whether to dismiss the subpoena.

If the judge decides the subpoena is valid, Eagle Forum will either have to hand over five years of documents or face contempt of court.

Ullman points to the chilling effect this has already had on other nonprofit groups who now fear getting involved in contentious issues because of the risk of being subpoenaed. And if all the necessary documents are not handed over, the government can “hold you in criminal contempt.”

“We urge everyone and we have over 60 groups who have come out in support of our petition to quash the subpoena. Please speak up and say that the DOJ has no right to harass nonprofit groups in this way.

In an interview with mobile radio’s FM Talk 106.5, Republican Senator Chris Elliott criticized Biden’s DOJ for issuing the subpoena to Eagle Forum and insisted the nonprofit refuses to comply. .

“I think it’s important that the Department of Justice and the entire federal government realize that their power and authority derives from the consent of the governed. And if they continue to act the way they do, I think you’re going to see a lot less consent,” he said.

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Steve Lance is the host of Capitol Report, a Washington-based political news show aimed at providing a direct channel for the voices and people who shape politics in America. Capitol Report features all of the day’s political news with expert interviews and analysis.

Naveen Athrappully

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Naveen Athrappully is a reporter and covers world affairs and events at The Epoch Times.

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