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White supremacist Richard Spencer no longer pursuing campus speeches, including at Kent State and Ohio State

March 15, 2018 GMT

White supremacist Richard Spencer no longer pursuing campus speeches, including at Kent State and Ohio State

CLEVELAND, Ohio - White supremacist Richard Spencer is no longer seeking to speak at large public campuses, including Ohio State University, the University of Cincinnati and Kent State University.

Spencer, who had been fighting in courts for his First Amendment right to speak at public campuses, now is reconsidering those actions, according a video released over the weekend.

Spencer said in the video on YouTube that it is “time to take a step back” and determine if public speaking at campuses or any venue is the right way to achieve his goals.

His attorney said a lawsuit against Ohio State University will be dropped, according to cincinnati.com. Ohio State was sued last October after turning down a request for Spencer to speak on Nov. 15, citing safety concerns.

Spencer’s decision to scale back campus appearances comes a little more than a week after a speech at Michigan State University drew hundreds of protestors and resulted in arrests.

After he won a lawsuit to appear on campus, Michigan State scheduled him to speak during spring break and in pavilion used by agriculture students.

He spoke to a crowd of about three dozen while about 500 people protested outside, The Lansing State Journal reported. Fights broke out at the protests outside, and more than 20 people were arrested on various charges.

The University of Cincinnati agreed last October to allow Spencer to speak, and scheduled the event for this month. But the event did not occur. Spencer sued the school for requiring him to pay a security fee. That lawsuit is still pending.

Spencer threatened to sue Kent State University in January after the university denied a request to allow him to speak on campus on May 4, the 48th anniversary of the day in 1970 when the Ohio National Guard fired into a crowd of demonstrators, killing four people and wounding nine.

White supremacist Richard Spencer not allowed to speak on May 4 at Kent State

A Kent State spokesman on Thursday said the university would have no comment on Spencer.

Spencer helped coin the term “alt-right” to describe a movement characterized by racist, anti-Semitic and white nationalist views.

His requests to appear on campuses led to concerns about how to provide security while not violating First Amendment rights. At a “Unite the Right” rally last August at the University of Virginia, torch-wielding followers of Spencer marched the grounds chanting Nazi refrains.

The next day, a woman died in Charlottesville after a white nationalist drove into a crowd of counter-protesters.

There were protestors and a few scuffles when Spencer spoke at the University of Florida in October. The university spent about $500,000 on security.