Tags: john cornyn | texas southern university | canceled

John Cornyn Texas Southern University Speech Off After DeVos Debacle

Image: John Cornyn Texas Southern University Speech Off After DeVos Debacle

Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn (R-TX) speaks with the media at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 31, 2017, in Washington, D.C. (Aaron P. Bernstein/Getty Images)

By    |   Friday, 12 May 2017 05:12 PM

Texas Sen. John Cornyn will not be speaking at Texas Southern University’s graduation ceremony following another historically black university commencement where Education Secretary Betsy DeVos was booed and heckled.

Prior to the university's announcement Friday, more than 800 people had signed a petition protesting the decision to invite Cornyn, a Republican, to speak at Saturday’s commencement.

Cornyn aides told the Houston Chronicle he was honored to have been invited to speak, but “he respects the administration’s decision and looks forward to continuing to engage with the University in the future.”

Texas Southern said it made the decision to “ensure that our students’ graduation day is a celebratory occasion and one they will remember positively for years to come,” the Chronicle reported.

The petition was sponsored by Change.org and originated with a graduating student, Rebecca Trevino. “Cornyn and his political party create and support policies that cause harm to marginalized communities,” she said, according to the Chronicle, citing Cornyn’s votes to confirm Devos and Jeff Sessions as Attorney General and his support for voter I.D. legislation.

“We want someone who represents us and our values,” Trevino told the Chronicle. “We have a lot of pride in our school, and we’re very protective of who comes by.”

Cornyn visited TSU’s campus in February 2016, touring the aviation and engineering program, pharmacy simulation lab, and the Thurgood Marshall School of Law as well as meeting with faculty and students, the Chronicle reported. He was reportedly invited to speak because he helped secure federal funding for historically black colleges, including Texas Southern University.

Education Secretary Betsy DeVos was booed and heckled throughout her speech during a commencement ceremony Wednesday at historically black Bethune-Cookman University after similar opposition to her speaking there.

Although many Twitter users applauded the decision to disinvite Cornyn, some were wondering why so many objected to him as a speaker.

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Texas Sen. John Cornyn will not be speaking at Texas Southern University's graduation ceremony following another historically black university commencement where Education Secretary Betsy DeVos was booed and heckled.
john cornyn, texas southern university, canceled
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2017-12-12
Friday, 12 May 2017 05:12 PM
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