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Trump and DeSantis to Speak at Moms for Liberty Gathering, Headlined by GOP Hopefuls in 2024

by Michael Nguyen
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Moms for Liberty gathering

Former President Donald Trump and Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, prominent contenders for the Republican presidential nomination in 2024, are scheduled to address the annual Moms for Liberty gathering on Friday. The Moms for Liberty group, established two years ago, has gained significant influence in conservative politics by strongly opposing teachings related to race and gender identity in American classrooms.

While the organization advocates for “parental rights” in education, it has faced criticism from an anti-hate watchdog, which has labeled it as “extremist” due to allegations of harassment towards community members, spreading anti-LGBTQ+ misinformation, and advocating for the removal of diverse and inclusive materials from lesson plans.

Other notable speakers at the event include former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley, Casey DeSantis (wife of Ron DeSantis), former Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson, and biotech entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy. The conference is being held at a hotel in downtown Philadelphia.

The presence of these political figures highlights the growing influence of Moms for Liberty, which has rapidly expanded from three Florida-based mothers opposing COVID mandates in 2021 to encompassing 285 chapters across 45 states. The organization has formed alliances with influential GOP organizations, politicians, and donors, solidifying its role as a major player in the 2024 political landscape.

In addition to speeches by candidates and other speakers, the summit will feature strategy sessions focusing on topics such as “protecting kids from gender ideology” and “comprehensive sex education: sex ed or sexualization.”

Outside the conference, parent activists and LGBTQ+ advocacy organizations have announced plans to stage protests, citing the Southern Poverty Law Center’s designation of Moms for Liberty as an “anti-government extremist” group. Recent incidents, including an Indiana Moms for Liberty chapter publishing an Adolf Hitler quote in its newsletter (later removed and apologized for) and a Tennessee chapter voicing complaints about lessons on Martin Luther King Jr. and Ruby Bridges, have added to the controversy surrounding the organization.

Several historical associations, state senators, activists, and employees at Philadelphia’s Museum of the American Revolution have unsuccessfully appealed to the museum to cancel the welcome event for the conference, which was scheduled for Thursday night. Critics argue that Moms for Liberty undermines the diverse and inclusive representation of LGBTQ+ and Black voices in history.

The museum defended its decision, stating that rejecting visitors based on ideology would contradict its mission of fostering understanding within a democratic society.

Several groups, including People for the American Way’s “Grandparents for Truth” campaign, are planning to rally against the conference in downtown Philadelphia on Friday. The campaign aims to mobilize grandparents and other supporters fighting for the freedom of the next generation to receive an inclusive education.

One of the participating grandparents, Maureen Carreño, expressed her desire for a more comprehensive approach to teaching history, one that acknowledges both positive and negative aspects: “I would hope that we teach the totality of history. And yes, it might make you feel a little bad or sad or something, but that’s part of history.”

Responding to the planned protests, Moms for Liberty co-founder Tiffany Justice stated that the protesters lacked understanding of the organization and suggested they could have attended the summit to learn more.

Although Moms for Liberty claims to be nonpartisan, it has predominantly attracted conservative support. The organization has also actively campaigned for the election of conservative candidates to school boards nationwide.

As a 501(c)4 nonprofit, Moms for Liberty is not required to disclose its funders. However, known public donors include conservative organizations like the Heritage Foundation and the Leadership Institute, a national political training organization. Additionally, Patriot Mobile, a far-right Christian cellphone company, is sponsoring Trump’s appearance at the conference through its PAC, which has invested substantial funds in attempting to influence Texas school boards.

Moms for Liberty’s PAC in Florida has received a $50,000 donation from Julie Fancelli, a Republican donor whose family owns Publix grocery stores. Fancelli was also involved in funding the January 6 “Stop the Steal” rally organized by Trump, according to findings from the House Jan. 6 committee. Fancelli has not responded to requests for comment.

Robert F. Kennedy Jr., an anti-vaccine activist running in the Democratic presidential primary, was initially scheduled to speak at the Moms for Liberty summit but later withdrew. Justice stated that Kennedy’s campaign cited schedule changes, but Kennedy himself admitted during a town hall that he declined the invitation upon learning of the organization’s positions on LGBTQ+ issues, acknowledging his mistake in accepting the invitation.


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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Moms for Liberty gathering

Who are the main speakers at the Moms for Liberty gathering?

Former President Donald Trump and Florida Governor Ron DeSantis are the main speakers at the Moms for Liberty gathering.

What is Moms for Liberty known for?

Moms for Liberty is known for fiercely opposing instruction related to race and gender identity in classrooms and advocating for “parental rights” in education.

Has Moms for Liberty gained influence in conservative politics?

Yes, Moms for Liberty has rapidly become a major player in conservative politics since its establishment two years ago. It has made connections with powerful GOP organizations, politicians, and donors, solidifying its influence.

What are some criticisms against Moms for Liberty?

The organization has faced criticism for alleged harassment of community members, spreading anti-LGBTQ+ misinformation, and fighting to remove diverse and inclusive materials from lesson plans.

Who else is speaking at the Moms for Liberty gathering?

Other notable speakers include former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley, Casey DeSantis (wife of Ron DeSantis), former Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson, and biotech entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy.

Are there any planned protests against the conference?

Yes, parent activists and LGBTQ+ advocacy organizations have announced plans to protest outside the conference, citing concerns over the organization’s positions and its designation as an “anti-government extremist” group.

Which organizations and donors support Moms for Liberty?

Public donors to Moms for Liberty include the Heritage Foundation, the Leadership Institute, and Patriot Mobile. Additionally, the organization has actively campaigned for conservative candidates in school board elections.

Is Moms for Liberty a nonpartisan organization?

Although Moms for Liberty claims to be nonpartisan, it has predominantly attracted conservative support and has actively supported conservative candidates for school boards.

Are there any controversies surrounding Moms for Liberty?

Yes, recent controversies include incidents such as an Indiana chapter publishing an Adolf Hitler quote and a Tennessee chapter voicing complaints about lessons on Martin Luther King Jr. and Ruby Bridges.

Does Moms for Liberty disclose its funders?

As a 501(c)4 nonprofit, Moms for Liberty is not required to disclose its funders. However, known public donors include conservative organizations such as the Heritage Foundation and the Leadership Institute.

Why did Robert F. Kennedy Jr. withdraw from speaking at the summit?

Robert F. Kennedy Jr., an anti-vaccine activist running in the Democratic presidential primary, withdrew from speaking at the summit. He cited learning about Moms for Liberty’s positions on LGBTQ+ issues as the reason for declining the invitation.

More about Moms for Liberty gathering

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5 comments

LibertyLover123 June 30, 2023 - 7:55 pm

moms for liberty sounds like a powerful group! love that they fight for parental rights in eduction. but some say they are extremist, spreading misinformation, that’s not good. hope they address those concerns at the gathering.

Reply
HistoryBuff87 July 1, 2023 - 2:34 am

it’s a shame that moms for liberty wants to erase LGBTQ+ and black voices from history. diversity is important! those who oppose the conference at the museum have a point. history should be accurate and inclusive.

Reply
EqualityAdvocate July 1, 2023 - 2:41 am

protesting this moms for liberty gathering! they are against inclusivity and LGBTQ+ rights. it’s important to stand up against hate and misinformation. everyone deserves equal education and representation. #NoHateInEducation

Reply
ProudPatriot July 1, 2023 - 6:19 am

can’t wait for this event! trump, desantis, and other great speakers! moms for liberty has really grown in just two years. they are making a difference and fighting for conservative values. let’s see what they have in store for us!

Reply
JohnDoe92 July 1, 2023 - 12:21 pm

wow, trump and desantis are speaking at this mom’s for liberty thing? can’t believe it! these guys are such big figures in gop. wonder what they gonna say about education and all that. gonna be interesting!

Reply

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