Apparently it was actually a third-party sponsor, the Intercollegiate Studies Institute, that cancelled the debate. Charley Arthur (aka Ward Churchill) at the filthy Try-Works blog says Ward "sent" him the explanation from the student head of the ISI, the upshot of which was that circumstances beyond their control caused the cancellation. EP:
The speculation over at Tryworks is that either ISI backed out (probable), Hanson himself chickened out (unlikely), or that a secret conservative cabal of outgoing CU President Hank Brown, President-elect Bruce Benson, and others determined that a VDH-WC debate wouldn't play well (?, also unlikely). There is also mention of Churchill pressing his contractual rights, and a potential lawsuit.Of course. But as EP points out,
Having had some experience with bringing out high-profile speakers to CU Boulder as an undergraduate, I can say that coordinating a debate is a logistical nightmare. Having multiple parties involved--VDH and Churchill, ISI, and CU (at a minimum)--only makes the situation more complicated and more fragile. The likelihood for miscommunication rises, and could give the impression (in this case, a false one) that one party "unexpectedly pulled out", when in fact no such thing happened.Teapot-sized though this tempest is, we'll keep you posted on developments.