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Trump appoints new members to 'patriotic education' commission

Trump appoints new members to 'patriotic education' commission

President TrumpDonald TrumpVeteran accused in alleged border wall scheme faces new charges Arizona Republicans to brush off DOJ concern about election audit FEC drops investigation into Trump hush money payments MORE appointed new members to the 1776 Commission on Friday in a final effort to bolster the “patriotic education” group in the closing days of his administration.

The White House said in a press release that Larry Arnn, a longtime Trump ally and president of the conservative Hillsdale College, will chair the panel. Carol Swain, a former law professor at Vanderbilt University and a conservative television analyst, will serve as vice chair. 

Among the other high-profile members of the panel are conservative activist Charlie Kirk, Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant (R) and Brooke Rollins, the president’s domestic policy adviser.

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The appointments are for two years, though it’s unclear if the commission will ever meet once President-elect Joe BidenJoe BidenAtlanta mayor won't run for reelection South Carolina governor to end pandemic unemployment benefits in June Airplane pollution set to soar with post-pandemic travel boom MORE takes office next month.

The 1776 Commission is the highly-touted White House push against critical race theory and The New York Times Magazine’s 1619 Project, which focuses on the country’s history of slavery and racism. Trump has said the project is divisive and teaches students to “hate their own country,” while supporters have said it is an important way to press the country to reckon with an ugly past. 

The president created the commission in November by executive order with the stated goal of “better [enabling] a rising generation to understand the history and principles of the founding of the United States in 1776 and to strive to form a more perfect Union.”

Critics said the announcement was an effort to push back against protests that had gripped the nation throughout the summer and fall against police brutality and systemic racism which were sparked by police shootings of unarmed Black Americans.