Arizona Lawmakers Tackle Speech On College Campuses

Published: Friday, March 16, 2018 - 9:08am

Arizona lawmakers voted to spell out what’s expected of state universities and community colleges when it comes to public speakers.

Arizona law already prevents these publicly funded schools from restricting a student's right to speech, hold a sign or distribute flyers in public areas. This latest measure expands upon that.

The legislation would extend free speech to anyone who can lawfully be on campus — not just students and faculty.

Republican Rep. Paul Boyer, who sponsored the measure, says there’s no political agenda behind it.

"Our bill is absolutely content neutral when it comes to content," he said. "So it protects 'Bernie bros' and I guess the other equivalent fans of Milo Yiannopoulos, or whatever."

Boyer acknowledged that Arizona has not had a situation like what happened at the University of California Berkeley where a speech by a conservative pundit was canceled amid protests.

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