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Catholic University President Retracts Gingrich Invitation

Washington, D.C.’s Catholic University has retracted an invitation to Candace Gingrich, the half-sister of the Speaker of the House Gingrich and a lesbian and gay rights activist, to speak at the school. The invitation was originally made by CU’s Organization for Lesbian and Gay Student Rights and was approved by CU’s Vice President Robert Friday. Friday commented on his approval, “This is a place where diverse points of view should be heard and the students can make up their own minds.”

CU president Patrick Ellis overturned the approval, stating “I have concluded that the presentation could not be compatible with the Catholic identity of the Catholic University of America.” The president of the campus lesbian and gay group Jacob Fabbri believes that the event was canceled due to pressure on the school president by a campus anti-abortion organization, Graduates for Life. The anti-abortion group wrote in a letter to the president that Gingrich’s work for the Human Right’s Campaign espousing equal rights for gays and lesbians would “contradict the truth of Catholic moral doctrine.”

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PlanetOut! - April 23, 1998