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GOP official’s speech canceled after protest

October 10, 2017 GMT

An event at Texas Southern University featuring Rep. Briscoe Cain, a Harris County Republican, was called off on Monday amid student protests.

It’s the second speech by a Republican lawmaker canceled by the Houston campus this year, and it comes as universities confront accusations of liberal bias from federal government officials. Increasingly, frequent student protests and several high-profile events heighten the debate.

In footage posted to Twitter by KHOU’s Janelle Bludau, students chanted in a classroom: “When a racist comes to town, shut it down.”

Cain said in a statement that his event was scheduled by TSU’s chapter of the Federalist Society, a right-leaning law group with chapters at law schools across the country.

Activists “bullied” the administration into ending the event, Cain said in a statement.

“It’s a sad day for universities across Texas whenever speech and a variety of views are prevented from being presented due to bullies,” he said.

TSU said in a statement that the event “ended early” because the event, through a student organization, was not registered properly.

It affirmed that the campus is “open and welcoming” to elected officials.

Last spring, after concerns about a confrontation at graduation, TSU canceled a scheduled commencement address by U.S. Sen. John Cornyn, the second-ranking Republican in the Senate.

TSU said then that the decision was made for the sake of students and families: “Every consideration is made to ensure that our student’s graduation day is a celebratory occasion and one they will remember positively for years to come. We asked Sen. Cornyn to instead visit with our students again at a future date in order to keep the focus on graduates and their families.”