Public to speak at hearing on UW free speech bill

Public to speak at hearing on UW free speech bill

A Republican bill that that would let Wisconsin’s universities punish students who disrupt free speech is getting its first public airing in the state Legislature.

The Assembly higher education committee plans to hold a public hearing Thursday on the proposal backed by Speaker Robin Vos and other Republicans. The measure calls for UW system officials to suspend or expel students who engage in disorderly conduct that interferes with the free expression of others.

Free speech has become a contentious issue at campuses around the country. Conservative firebrands such as Ann Coulter have had to cancel appearances due to scores of students protesting what they believe is hate speech. Republicans say conservative speakers should be afforded equal treatment.

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