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Bushs visit not wasted money [View All]

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douglas9 Donating Member (762 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-17-10 04:44 AM
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Former President George W. Bush will speak at 8 p.m. tonight in the Coliseum in front of a sold-out crowd as a part of UNTs Distinguished Lecture Series. Bush will be paid $100,000 for the visit, which comes from student fees.

Many students have opposed the former presidents visit, complaining that student fees shouldnt pay for him to speak at our university but the fees are already reserved for the series each year.

The Distinguished Lecture Series committee places 12 finalists on a ballot during the Student Government Associations presidential election every year based on input from student organizations and individuals. Students then vote on the speakers and the finalists are ranked from the highest number of votes to the lowest. Bush ranked third on the list two years ago. He declined to come because he wasnt making appearances at the time, but this year, set to launch a national book publicity tour, he approached UNT for the opportunity.

The 12 finalists selected arent always viable candidates; theyre a representation of who students have expressed interest in having visit. Theyre often unavailable for a variety of reasons. For instance, perennial TV personality Mike Rowe received a large percentage of the vote last year but wasnt giving public speeches at the time.

Many have argued that $100,000 is too much to pay Bush, yet many lower-profile figures often ask for much more. For example, former president Jimmy Carter who received fewer votes than Bush asked for more money. Former Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice asked for more than $100,000 in addition to a requirement that UNT provide a private jet.
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