Meet Candice Jackson, who on Wednesday became the new acting head of the US Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights. You might remember her from when she organized that meet-and-greet between Donald Trump and Bill Clinton’s sexual assault accusers last October.
Jackson is a graduate of the University of Stanford, according to an in-depth profile by ProPublica, and spent her time there acting as a voice for conservative circles. She was particularly vocal in the pages of the Stanford Review (a publication co-founded by billionaire Peter Thiel), penning several essays on affirmative action, race, and gender that seem at odds with her new position in the Education Department. From ProPublica:
As an undergraduate studying calculus at Stanford University in the mid-1990s, Candice Jackson “gravitated” toward a section of the class that provided students with extra help on challenging problems, she wrote in a student publication. Then she learned that the section was reserved for minority students.
“I am especially disappointed that the University encourages these and other discriminatory programs,” she wrote in the Stanford Review. “We need to allow each person to define his or her own achievements instead of assuming competence or incompetence based on race.”
In a later essay on affirmative action programs at private universities she wrote, “As with most liberal solutions to a problem, giving special assistance to minority students is a band-aid solution to a deep problem. No one, least of all the minority student, is well served by receiving special treatment based on race or ethnicity.”
In her senior year, she penned an essay on her refusal to learn anything new while in school titled “How I Survived Stanford Without Entering the Women’s Center” with explains a lot:
“In today’s society, women have the same opportunities as men to advance their careers, raise families, and pursue their personal goals,” she wrote. “College women who insist on banding together by gender to fight for their rights are moving backwards, not forwards.”
In the article, she encouraged women to choose conservatism over feminism. “I think many women are instinctively conservative, but are guided into the folds of feminism before discovering the conservative community,” she wrote.
She concluded, “[t]he real women’s issues are conservative ones.”
Though Jackson rejected ProPublica’s request for an interview, reporter Annie Waldman did speak with the Stanford Review’s Eric Jackson (no relation), who asked that readers keep in mind that Candice wrote those pieces 20 years ago, when the concept of “feminism” was “different than what happens today.” He added that Candice Jackson is very “pro woman.”
Jackson has certainly been successful in her campaign of support for women associated with Bill Clinton’s history of sexual misconduct, writing a book in 2005 called Their Lives: The Women Targeted by the Clinton Machine. A few days preceding the debate between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump, in which Jackson sat with Bill Clinton’s accusers in the audience, she started the Their Lives Foundation, which “supports all victims of power abusers.” However, on her Facebook page, which has since been deleted, she wrote that Donald Trump’s many accusers were “fake victims.”
Jackson’s appointment does not require a confirmation, as she is officially only the deputy assistant secretary to the office. That position will need to be filled and receive a senate confirmation. Until then, Jackson is in charge of the all civil rights complaints seen by her office on an annual basis, numbering in the thousands, and controlling 550 employees. You can and should read more about her here.