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Sasse faces protests the first day on the job at University of Florida

Former Senator Ben Sasse spent his first day as president of the University of Florida closeted in his office, while students and staff protested outside. Associated Press/Photo by Alex Brandon, File

Sasse faces protests the first day on the job at University of Florida

About 100 University of Florida students and staff crowded the administration building to protest former Sen. Ben Sasse’s appointment as president, The Gainesville Sun reported on Monday. Protesters reportedly knocked on the door of Sasse’s office, but he refused to answer. They left copies of their demands taped to walls and doors before leaving.

Why are they protesting Sasse? The Sun quoted one student who took issue with Sasse’s pro-life stance and belief in heterosexual marriage. Among the protesters’ demands on Monday were requests for protected tenure for university staff, as well as promises that the university would maintain its commitments to inclusivity and diversity. Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis said last week he would try to ban so-called diversity, equity, and inclusivity initiatives in universities across the state. Sasse is a Republican who represented Nebraska in the U.S. Senate for eight years before leaving office to become the university’s president.

Dig deeper: Read Brad Littlejohn’s column in WORLD Opinions about regaining lost ground in academia—and how DeSantis shows it can be done.

Josh Schumacher

Josh is a breaking news reporter for WORLD. He’s a graduate of World Journalism Institute and Patrick Henry College.

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