After Virginia Tech denied claims from Wall Street Journal columnist Jason Riley that he had been invited and then disinvited to give a lecture because of his conservative beliefs, Riley produced proof that he had been invited.
After Riley’s allegations prompted an outcry, Dean Robert T. Sumichrast issued a statement yesterday denying that he had ever actually been invited to speak. “To clarify what has been reported, no invitation was ever extended to Jason Riley. A faculty member did reach out to Mr. Riley to inquire of his interest in speaking at Virginia Tech… This faculty member does not represent the committee’s voice and this faculty member did not extend an invitation nor rescind an invitation.”
But Riley tweeted out the email he had received from the faculty member, which certainly sounded like an invitation.
— Jason Riley (@jasonrileywsj) May 4, 2016
“My purpose in writing to you is to invite you to give the fall 2016 lecture in Blacksburg,” the highlighted section reads, before continuing, “Given your contributions to the editorial page of the Wall Street Journal, I believe you would be a very appropriate choice to give the lecture.”
UPDATE (12:05 PM ET): After Riley released the email, Virginia Tech’s president released a statement apologizing for the mix-up and asking him to come speak.
— Virginia Tech (@virginia_tech) May 5, 2016
[Image via screengrab]
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