Analysis: Dems get 95% of donations from UNL faculty

Kyle Perisic
Leadership Institute Intern

  • Over the last three election cycles, a whopping 95 percent of political donations from University of Nebraska, Lincoln (UNL) employees have gone to Democrats.
  • The disparity is even greater than suggested by voter registration records, which show that more than 50% of professors across 7 major departments identify as Democrats.
  • The university has been desperately disputing allegations that it is hostile to conservatives ever since a group of professors harassed a student while she recruited for her TPUSA club in August.
  • Over the last three election cycles, a whopping 95 percent of political donations from University of Nebraska, Lincoln (UNL) employees have gone to Democrats.

    UNL came under widespread scrutiny in August, when several professors and at least one teaching assistant taunted and harassed the president of the school’s Turning Point USA chapter while she tried to recruit new members on campus, eventually driving her to tears.

    "Over the past three election cycles, UNL employees donated $95,905 to Democrats and just $4,840 to Republicans, a ratio approaching 20-to-1."   

    The incident prompted three state senators to write an open letter demanding that administrators explain the school’s hostility toward conservatives, a charge that UNL has vehemently denied, noting that it has disciplined a teaching assistant from the English Department who took part in the harassment.

    [RELATED: Lecturer dismissed after harassing conservative student]

    As Campus Reform previously reported, however, voter registration records indicate that more than half of the faculty members across seven major departments at UNL are registered Democrats, while less than 10 percent identify as Republicans.

    Data compiled by the Center for Responsive Politics reveal that the skew is even more lopsided when it comes to political donations, showing that over the past three election cycles, UNL employees donated $95,905 to Democrats and just $4,840 to Republicans, a ratio approaching 20-to-1.

    The imbalance peaked during the heated 2016 election cycle, when 99 percent of the nearly $60,000 donated by UNL employees went to Democrats. Republicans received just $590 that year, representing an improvement over the 2014 election cycle, when the GOP did not receive a single dollar from anyone affiliated with UNL.

    Republicans fared somewhat better in 2012, raising $4,250 from UNL employees, but Democrats still raked in about 88 percent of donations during that cycle.

    [RELATED: Dems receive 94% of Ivy League donations so far this cycle]

    UNL faculty members have been vocally supportive of the teaching assistant who was dismissed for her role in the protest, holding a rally calling her actions an act of “academic freedom,” and recently, more than 300 professors signed an open letter accusing the state senators of leveraging “a single campus interaction into a sustained attack on the university that has greatly surpassed the scope and import of the initial incident.”

    Moreover, most of the professors involved in the original incident are part of the school’s English Department, which of late has courted controversy in other ways, as well.

    In October, for instance, anti-capitalist signs were posted in the windows of the building that houses the department, and later that same month an English professor released an anthology of “nasty women poets” compiled as a response to Donald Trump’s election.

    Indeed, Campus Reform’s review of voter registration records failed to identify a single Republican among the entire English Department faculty, members of which have contributed exclusively to Democratic candidates and causes for at least the past three election cycles.

    Follow the author of this article on Twitter: @KylePerisic





    Kyle Perisic

    Kyle Perisic

    Leadership Institute Intern
    Kyle Perisic is a Leadership Institute Intern, and reports liberal bias and abuse on college campuses for Campus Reform. He is originally from Minnesota and graduated from the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities with a double major in English and Political Science. While in college, Kyle was a member of various student organizations, worked in government relations, and worked on several political campaigns.
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