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Tags: virginia foxx | truman scholarship | bias | conservatives | candidates | liberal | causes

Lawmakers: Taxpayer-Funded Scholarship Has Liberal Bias

By    |   Monday, 20 May 2024 08:24 PM EDT

The taxpayer-funded status of the renowned Truman Scholarship is in jeopardy because of an alleged bias against conservatives.

Rep. Virginia Foxx, R-N.C., chair of the House Committee on Education and the Workforce, wrote a letter to Dr. Terry Babcock-Lumish, executive secretary of The Harry S. Truman Scholarship Foundation, regarding concerns the organization favors those who support liberal causes by a 10-to-1 margin over conservative candidates.

The letter also was signed by Rep. Burgess Owens, R-Utah, chair of the Subcommittee on Higher Education and Workforce Development, and Robert Aderholt, R-Ala., chair of the Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies.

"Between 2021 and 2023, the Truman Foundation selected 182 Truman winners," the lawmakers wrote. "Yet, despite the Truman Foundation's claims that it 'supports scholars from a wide range of perspectives, interests, and geographic areas,' just six recipients espoused interest in a cause traditionally considered conservative-leaning.

"Not a single winner professed interest in causes such as protecting the rights of the unborn or defending the Second Amendment. By contrast, the Foundation selected at least 74 winners professing interest in a progressive cause."

Congress created the scholarship in 1974 and it was signed into law by President Gerald Ford on Jan. 1, 1975, as a tribute to the 33rd president, the last of 12 U.S. presidents who did not attend or graduate from college. According to the foundation's website, Truman, who died in 1972 at age 88, did not want a brick-and-mortar monument. Instead, he wanted a living memorial that would "give life to the values of service that animated his career."

The letter stated the foundation requested $3 million in appropriations for the 2025 fiscal year, which begins Oct. 1.

"However, if the Truman Scholarship functions as a career booster solely for students of a particular political persuasion, it should no longer be worthy of Congressional support, taxpayer funding, or its exalted public image," the lawmakers wrote.

The lawmakers posed questions to the foundation that it would like answered by June 3, including how it supports scholars from a "wide range of perspectives"; how it ensures its regional review and finalist selection committee members do not discriminate against conservative candidates; what percentage of its applicant pool from 2021 to 2023 advocated primarily for conservative causes; and if it is taking steps to recruit a "more ideologically diverse pool of nominees."

"We are alarmed that an allegedly nonpartisan award displays such a stark partisan tilt," the lawmakers wrote. "As you are aware, the Truman Foundation was established by Congress and is funded by taxpayers for the purpose of awarding 'scholarships to persons who demonstrate outstanding potential for and who plan to pursue a career in public service.' We refuse to believe that only liberal students demonstrate 'outstanding potential' in public service."

Newsmax reached out to Babcock-Lumish and the foundation for comment, but Deputy Executive Secretary Tara Yglesias told the Washington Examiner it would be responding to the full committee at a later date and said foundation members "disagree with several of the data points used to arrive at the '10-to-1′ number."

Michael Katz

Michael Katz is a Newsmax reporter with more than 30 years of experience reporting and editing on news, culture, and politics.

© 2024 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

The taxpayer-funded status of the renowned Truman Scholarship is in jeopardy because of an alleged bias against conservatives.
virginia foxx, truman scholarship, bias, conservatives, candidates, liberal, causes
Monday, 20 May 2024 08:24 PM
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