Rutledge Sues Biden Administration for Taking Away School Lunches

Says, ‘Unbelievable that President Biden would punish children in order to spread his radical gender ideology’


LITTLE ROCK– Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge joined 22 attorneys general in filing a lawsuit today against the Biden Administration for withholding school lunch program funding from schools that fail to adopt the Administration’s new guidance on gender identity and sexual orientation. The U.S. Department of Agriculture administers The National School Lunch Program under the Food and Nutrition Service to ensure that children do not attend school hungry.

“President Biden is the bully trying to take away our children’s lunch money,” said Attorney General Leslie Rutledge. “It is unbelievable that President Biden would punish children in order to spread his radical gender ideology.”

In June, Rutledge joined her colleagues in sending a letter to the Biden Administration explaining the Biden administration’s guidance is not consistent with federal law. That guidance puts Arkansas’s Title IX and SNAP school lunch funding at risk. More than 300,000 Arkansas students rely on National School Lunch Program each day for breakfast, lunch or both. Nearly 30 million rely on the program nationwide.

Joining Arkansas in the lawsuit are the attorneys general of Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Georgia, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia and West Virginia.

To read the complaint, click here.

About Attorney General Leslie Rutledge

Leslie Carol Rutledge is the 56th Attorney General of Arkansas. Elected on November 4, 2014, and sworn in on January 13, 2015, she is the first woman and first Republican in Arkansas history to be elected as Attorney General. She was resoundingly re-elected on November 6, 2018. Since taking office, she has significantly increased the number of arrests and convictions against online predators who exploit children and con artists who steal taxpayer money through Social Security Disability and Medicaid fraud. Further, she has held Rutledge Roundtable meetings and Mobile Office hours in every county of the State each year, and launched a Military and Veterans Initiative. She has led efforts to roll back government regulations that hurt job creators, fight the opioid epidemic, teach internet safety, combat domestic violence and make the office the top law firm for Arkansans. Rutledge serves on committees for Consumer Protection, Criminal Law and Veterans Affairs for the National Association of Attorneys General. She also served as the former Chairwoman of the Republican Attorneys General Association.

A native of Batesville, she is a graduate of the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville and the University of Arkansas at Little Rock William H. Bowen School of Law. Rutledge clerked for the Arkansas Court of Appeals, was Deputy Counsel for former Governor Mike Huckabee, served as a Deputy Prosecuting Attorney in Lonoke County and was an Attorney at the Department of Human Services before serving as Counsel at the Republican National Committee. Rutledge and her husband, Boyce, have one daughter. The family has a home in Pulaski County and a farm in Crittenden County.


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