The following Blog post is by Will Cain, political analyst for TheBlaze TV
I lack a very essential ingredient when it comes to big-time punditry. Outrage. I’m just outrage deficient.
But this gets me a little worked up. Do colleges discriminate against conservatives in their hiring practices? Is it unconstitutional if state schools discriminate? Those are questions being debated in an Iowa federal court this week. And those are the questions I attempt to answer in my latest CNN.com column.
The Supreme Court has stated clearly that the First Amendment prohibits a state from basing hiring decisions on political beliefs or associations. This rule, though, is not absolute. Imagine President Obama prohibited from rejecting Grover Norquist for ideological reasons. So the Court has recognized limited exceptions for positions like those in policymaking. There you can openly reject someone because of their views, because their views speak to the merits of their qualifications.
But academia is not a policymaking institution. Is higher education supposed to be a taxpayer funded one-sided training camp? With 75% of college professors identifying as liberal, is that what it’s turned into?
Trust me, I don’t like the idea of courts interfering in college curriculum or personnel. I also don’t want courts trying to define who and what is conservative, or liberal, or libertarian…which, would eventually come up. But I don’t think the government can reject you for your political beliefs either.