**Been asked to add a TL;DR - Local politicians were behind the manufactured CRT outrage and curriculum battle here in WCS....it was all orchestrated, coached, and Moms for Liberty executed for them. When that didn't work and MFL became toxic, MFL and their people got ditched. This other slate of candidates are 100% MFL-agenda-aligned but know better than to admit it.
In 2014, the Williamson County School Board was taken over by far-right candidates who campaigned on the evils of Common Core curriculum and keeping the far-left influence out of public schools.
Yep, in 2022 the far-right are campaigning on the evils of Critical Race Theory (CRT) - which isn't taught in WCS and never has been - and keeping the far-left indoctrination out of schools.
The names are different, but the people pulling the strings behind the scene are 100% the same. Let us explain why Drason Beasley, Dan Cash, Jay Galbreath and Josh Brown are the hand-picked slate for the political handlers behind the scenes who want to "take back" the majority on our School Board.
And no, we aren't talking about Moms for Liberty...but it'll all come around to them.
Back in 2014, the Leaders of Tennessee PAC was a notably consistent donor across the campaigns of Susan Curlee, Candy Emerson, Beth Burgos, and Dan Cash - the "tea party" slate featured on matching anti-common core mailers.
The head of that PAC back then was none other than Monty Lankford. If you want to google "Leaders of Tennessee PAC" there's some interesting and dubious financial history.
That name may not be familiar to many of you, but here are some pertinent highlights:
Monty Lankford ran (and lost) for US Congress back in 2008.
Some of his campaign donors included Glen Casada, Josh Brown (D4 WCSB), and Robbie Beal (Williamson County Commissioner 2018-21) - noting this here only to show how far back these connections go.
Lankford is now Josh Brown's 2022 School Board treasurer for his District 4 race
He also happens to be Drason Beasley's brother-in-law. Beasley is currently running against WCSB Chair Nancy Garrett in District 12, and his campaign treasurer is Robbie Beal.
Lankford was the recipient, for some mysterious reason, of emails from D2 School Board member Dan Cash about the Moms for Liberty CRT complaint in January 2022 - please note the "Let Bill Lee know people are wanting to hear from him." request.
Why was Dan Cash, who has been the Moms for Liberty mouthpiece on the School Board, sending this info to Lankford?
Soon thereafter, Drason Beasley announced his candidacy for School Board.
A probably unnecessary reminder that Josh Brown's spouse is Mary Kate Brown, a political consultant who worked for Glen Casada's campaign among others. The Browns have been extremely active in the local Republican party for many, many years and their network and connections in those circles are wide.
Mary Kate Brown and D6 School Board member Jay Galbreath are co-admins of the Back to School (BTS) anti-masking facebook group that popped up during COVID closures in 2020, with organizing efforts to push the district into reopening schools without masks as soon as possible. Robin Baldree, who ran for county commissioner in the May 2022 primary, is another group admin and used to be an active commenter in the Moms for Liberty facebook group during the height of the curriculum battles with WCS and has since been door knocking for Josh Brown's campaign. Cozzi and McGrade, shown in the below Dan Cash campaign meet & greet post, are two of the main trolls from that BTS group who attack everyone who isn't a BTS "member" on social media. Dan, Jay, and Beasley are their guys.
[side note that another BTS facebook group admin is TN House District 63 candidate Jake McCalmon's wife. This "parent group" sure is politically active!]
Cash and Beasley are friendly, as noted in Cash's newly-resurrected Facebook page (which had been dormant since his 2014 election.)
In fall of 2021, during still-peak COVID/school protocol discussions, the District 4 school board seat was vacated by Brad Fiscus who moved out of state, and Pfizer VP Josh Brown stepped out of seemingly nowhere to run for the interim appointment versus his incredibly politically active wife. Pfizer has been a corporate donor to Casada's campaigns in the past, but that's a random side note.
The 2 County Commissioners tasked with choosing who to appoint were Gregg Lawrence and Chad Story. Lawrence unsuccessfully attempted to nominate anti-Muslim textbook activist, Laurie Cardoza-Moore, to the D4 open seat back in 2015, giving her his full endorsement, but the controversy and outcry that occurred within the community forced her to remove herself from the running. Note that Cardoza-Moore was an early member of the local Moms for Liberty facebook group when it first formed in 2021.
In 2018, Marsha Blackburn's PAC swooped in during the last few weeks of Lawrence and Story's county commissioner campaigns to give them each $5,000 - someone really wanted to make sure they won those local races.
So in 2021, Lawrence and Story as District 4 Commissioners nominated Josh Brown to the open District 4 school board seat out of a field of 10 candidates who applied for the role. Lawrence has also given Josh Brown his public endorsement in this 2022 campaign, which was shared on Brown's campaign Facebook page.
Brown has raised over $30,000 to date for his local county campaign, an astronomical number in an election like this, and he used some of that to contribute to Lawrence's 2022 election campaign. Not sure why people couldn't just contribute to Lawrence themselves if they wanted to, but there's a LOT of campaigns donating money to each other in 2022.
What's also notable about Gregg Lawrence is that he has been at the core of the local Moms for Liberty organizing since day 1, literally. Open records records show he was on an email chain where a local parent draft and edit the original email complaint on Wit & Wisdom to send to WCS officials with the help of Franklin Alderman Bev Burger. That parent was Chara Dixon, who we discussed in our Josh Brown probably owns a Moms for Liberty t-shirt post back in May, including that Chara & Brian Dixon hosted a campaign meet & greet for Josh Brown this spring.
This email was by all reports the very first complaint about ELA curriculum Wit & Wisdom, and you can see the chain by which it reached Superintendent Jason Golden and those on the thread (Cash, Galbreath, Lawrence):
Gregg Lawrence has also shared his displeasure with Jay Galbreath on certain school board topics at times, coincidentally the diversity consultants WCS was looking to hire. Note again that it's Galbreath, Cash, Lawrence, Story, and Burger on these chains:
Kinda sounds like a warning from the bosses behind the scenes who weren't too happy with how things were going.
Oh, look - here's Jay being helpful again to Lawrence, Chad Story, and Franklin Alderman Bev Burger (who quite literally has *zero* to do with WCS in her role) on the diversity consultants that WCS was looking to hire:
Ruh-roh. Someone is in trouble for voting the wrong way.
Wait. Didn't Robin Steenman say on a national podcast that WCS hiring diversity consultants was what tipped her into getting involved locally? That's crazy!
Mary Kate Brown's BTS group facebook page (The Bulletin) has been clear that "their" candidates - and you can be pretty darn sure who recruited some of these candidates to run - all share a LITERALLY IDENTICAL PLATFORM. And it just happens to be an anti-CRT platform!
If this looks pretty identical to Moms for Liberty's talking points? You're not wrong.
But this very-politically connected "Back to School" group and the nationally-coordinated Moms for Liberty conservatives have been at each other's throats in 2022. You've likely seen mailers and ads about "true conservatives" running for office. They cannot stand each other and openly say so in their individual Facebook groups, but the only differences they really have are the tactics they're comfortable using to get their way.
Moms for Liberty candidates don't have a politically savvy bone in their collective bodies. They're a train wreck and have become so toxic, most rational people around here won't acknowledge an association.
This Williamson County "establishment" slate? They know what they're doing. They want you to believe they're harmless when in fact they also believe in censoring books in the guise of "age appropriateness" and imposing their personal belief systems on a large public school population.
Just this week, Jay Galbreath repeatedly admitted to thinking gay kids are not normal as a hat tip as to what this crew likely believes. That's pretty Moms for Liberty-esque.
As we've been saying for a long time, there is very little difference in all of these candidates and they're trying to tell voters that using only slightly more sophisticated language than the Doc Holladay, Donna Clements, and Debbie Pace's of the world.
Drason Beasley, Dan Cash, Jay Galbreath and Josh Brown are the 2022 "tea party" slate who are straight up telling you they'll act as a majority to censor textbooks, curriculum, support charter schools, and weaken our public schools. It's Curlee, Burgos, Cash, and Emerson all over again. They have the same backers, an uncanny amount of connections amongst themselves, and a level of coordination in their campaigns that we've seen before.
They're going to come out swinging saying they're just all old friends who happen to have major politically connected buddies and there's nothing to see here, and of course they all know each other! There are big names in these circles. Everyone is cozy with Blackburn, Bill Lee, Jack Johnson, and before his very public fall from grace, Glen Casada. Casada's CAS-PAC's treasurer is Jim Leuty, who's also the treasurer of the Right Tennessee PAC which donated $500 to the Moms for Liberty PAC in March 2022. Probably unrelated.
I told you we need that flowchart! It's one big but really tight web of political influence.
We've seen it before and there was little we could do to stop it back then.
Please make sure people are awake this time around and show up to vote for the public school champions we've endorsed.