Four advocacy groups filed a federal lawsuit Thursday over Education Secretary Betsy DeVos’ revised federal guidelines for sexual assault allegations on the campuses of colleges and K-12 schools.  They claim these changes “dramatically undermine” victims’ civil rights.

These victim-advocacy groups hope to block the changes, which bolster the rights of due process for those accused, before their Aug. 14 enactment date.   The suit was filed in a Maryland U.S. District Court by the American CivilLiberties Union and the law firm Stroock & Stroock & Lavan LLP. 

“This new federal effort to weaken Title IX makes it more difficult for victims of sexual harassment or sexual assault to continue their educations and needlessly comes amid a global pandemic,” the suit claims, naming specifically DeVos, the Department of Education, and Kenneth Marcus, the agency’s assistant secretary for civil rights.

Yahoo News reports:

DeVos last week denied that the final rule would discourage accusers from coming forward to report abuse, saying that it instead allows for schools to be more balanced in how they review claims, rather than through what she called a “kangaroo court” approach.

“We can continue to combat sexual misconduct without abandoning our core values of fairness, presumption of innocence and due process,” DeVos told reporters.

I’m on Team DeVos. 

Remember “innocent until proven guilty?”  Kids, it was a thing once, I promise.  Before the Obama administration demolished the presumption of innocence.

Robby Soave summed up this situation best, when he tweeted, “It breaks my heart to report that the ACLU, ostensibly an organization that defends civil liberties, is suing to prevent Betsy DeVos from strengthening civil liberties protections on college campuses.”

Hat Tip: Yahoo News

Image Credit: Gage Skidmore on Flickr

About The Author

Mark Meckler

Mark was a co-founder of the Tea Party Patriots, and served as the national coordinator. He left the organization to work more broadly on expanding the self-governance movement beyond the partisan divide. Mark appears regularly on television in outlets as diverse as MSNBC, ABC, NBC, Fox News, CNN, Bloomberg, Fox Business and the BBC. He’s highly sought after for the tea party perspective from print and electronic media outlets, from the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, L.A. Times, Washington Examiner, Politico and the The Hill. Mark blogs at, and his opinion editorials regularly run in many of the leading political newspapers both on and offline. Mark has a BA in English from San Diego State University and graduated with honors from University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law in 1988. He practiced real estate and business law for almost a decade. For the last eleven years of his legal career he specialized in Internet advertising law. When not fighting for the future of our nation, Mark is an avid horseman, and lives in rural northern California with his wife Patty and two children.