McConnell and more than 30 of his GOP colleagues penned a letter to Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona blasting the new proposed priorities for American history and civics teaching as “divisive nonsense.”
“Americans do not need or want their tax dollars diverted from promoting the principles that unite our nation toward promoting radical ideologies meant to divide us,” McConnell wrote.
However, the headline published by Reuters read, “Republicans ask Biden to withdraw ‘divisive’ proposal to teach more Black history,” skewing the complaint brought by the McConnell-led group.
“Dozens of Senate Republicans called on the Biden administration on Friday to withdraw what they say is a ‘divisive’ education proposal that would place greater emphasis on slavery and the contributions of Black Americans in history and civics lessons taught in U.S. schools,” Reuters began its report.
While the “1619 Project” was the main focus of the GOP’s pushback, Reuters buried any mention of it until the sixth paragraph.
The wire service elevated its narrative by attaching a photo of the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial in Washington D.C. to its report and tweet, suggesting that Republicans also reject the idea of children learning about the civil rights icon.
Critics called out the misleading headline on Twitter.
“Not what it is but Reuters knows this,” conservative commentator Stephen Miller wrote.
“1619 Project is not ‘[B]lack history,'” Twitter user Fusilli Spock tweeted.
On April 19, the Department of Education published a proposal for new federal grant guidelines designed to promote more “culturally responsive teaching and learning” at K-12 schools. As positive examples, the department cited the “landmark” 1619 Project, the resources of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and “anti-racist practices” modeled by scholar and author Ibram X. Kendi.
The 1619 Project was a Pulitzer Prize-winning New York Times Magazine enterprise that examined the long-term consequences of slavery in America. It was released in 2019 to coincide with the 400th anniversary of the arrival of the first enslaved Africans in colonial Virginia in 1619. Historians have raised concerns about some of the claims, notably that slavery was a primary reason that American colonists sought independence from Great Britain.
Fox News’ Marisa Schultz contributed to this report.