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Media gives cover to Boise mayor’s latest leftist move, but fails to tell the whole story

Media gives cover to Boise mayor’s latest leftist move, but fails to tell the whole story

Emri Moore
September 10, 2021
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September 10, 2021

After the Idaho Freedom Foundation exposed Boise Mayor Lauren McLean for signing a national organization’s resolution in support of Critical Race Theory (CRT) in public K-12 education, the media jumped in to do damage control for McLean. 

But we’ve learned that McLean’s story doesn’t hold water. 

BoiseDev.com reported Thursday that McLean’s support of the CRT resolution by the U.S. Conference of Mayors was an error by the mayor’s director of government affairs, Kathy Griesmyer. According to the emails provided to BoiseDev.com and the Idaho Freedom Foundation, Griesmyer initially marked the CRT resolution as being one that McLean would cosponsor. But Griesmyer said that was an accident. When asked if there was any written proof or email communication from McLean that she did not support the resolution before her name was listed as a sponsor, Griesmyer said, “That I’m aware of, no.” 

The media, including BoiseDev, Idaho Ed News, and the Idaho Statesman, accepted the mayor’s version of the events.  

A closer look reveals that McLean is still on record as supporting the teaching of critical race theory in K-12 public schools. Here’s why: The United States Conference of Mayors gave McLean a chance to speak up and vote against the CRT resolution, and McLean chose not to participate in this meeting or vote no. 

The United States Conference of Mayors’ website lists the mayors who voted against the “Support of Critical Race Theory in Public K-12 Education” resolution. Three mayors voted “no.” A staff member at the conference said mayors who are full members of the conference can vote on resolutions. McLean is a full member and had the option to vote no on the resolution but chose not to. In fact, McLean did not vote against any resolution, including a resolution supportive of the Biden administration’s gun restriction proposals. 

Griesmyer explained to IFF that McLean did not vote against the CRT resolution because she did not attend the meeting to discuss and vote on the resolution. Griesmyer said McLean only attended a small number of meetings that aligned with what her team was focusing on for the city like combating climate change. 

It’s also worth noting that according to the U.S. Conference of Mayors, Boise taxpayers are paying $12,242 for McLean to be a member of the USCM. Not only should this raise concerns for taxpayers, but also it begs the question: Why is McLean not actively seeking to attend more meetings during the USCM conference when taxpayer dollars are being used for her to be a member? The media should be asking McLean about this issue, because it means McLean is wasting taxpayers' hard-earned dollars on an organization that tends to advocate for left-leaning policies. 

In short: McLean’s office initially showed support to implement CRT in public schools. She did not vote no on the resolution when she could have, and laid blame on her staff for her actions. The media bought the story, ignoring the fact that McLean has previously given support for radical issues only to walk back her support later through misdirection

Regardless of what the media reports or fails to report, the simple fact is Boise’s mayor is now on record for supporting a host of leftist resolutions peddled by a national organization of mayors, and that includes the resolution to promote critical race theory in government schools. 

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