Monday, February 11, 2008

CU waffles on Benson

New West (links theirs):
The candidacy of Republican fundraiser Bruce Benson to become the president of the University of Colorado received another blow over the weekend when CU regent Cindy Carlisle announced she would no longer support him. A candidate for state Senate from Boulder, Carlisle had previously been the sole Democrat on the board of regents to come out in favor of Benson.
Carlisle, of course, was the lone regent to vote against firing Ward Churchill. Can't figure out why she was in favor of Benson in the first place.

Late last week the CU faculty assembly postponed a vote on whether to support the proposed appointment of Benson, who has been an oil and gas CEO and is the former chairman of the Colorado Republican party. He is the sole finalist for the job of CU president.

The strikes against Benson are easily compiled: he has no experience as a scholar or a college administrator; he holds no advanced degrees; he has been a partisan political figure (helping head up, for instance, the right-wing Trailhead Group); he doesn’t believe in global warming (at one campus gathering last week he cited National Geographic as proving that current climate change could be part of long-term cycles); and he has no apparent qualifications to head a major state-funded research university [emphasis mine].

Update: Legislators join in.

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