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Afternoon Read: Outrage and Questions Surround Firing of UVA President

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PM Read: Outrage, Questions in Firing of UVA Pres

Courtesy of the University of Virginia

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The backlash from the abrupt ousting of the University of Virginia president Teresa Sullivan is intensifying, and now the faculty is speaking out in support of their boss.

Thirty-nine department chairs and program directors at the university issued a letter protesting the Board of Visitors’ decision to remove President Teresa Sullivan and joined “in the university-wide request for clarification.”

Excerpt from letter obtained by Richmond Times-Dispatch:

“We strongly urge the board of visitors to reopen discussion with President Sullivan and the faculty,” the letter, addressed to university Rector Helen Dragas and members of the board, said.

“The entire university community would benefit from a full airing of the specific ‘philosophical differences’ mentioned by you and President Sullivan in order to form a clear vision for the months and years ahead,” the letter said.

“We believe that this abrupt and, from our point of view, opaque decision will deeply threaten the way U.Va. is perceived by prospective as well as current faculty, students, and donors.”

On Friday, the university’s governing Board of Visitors abruptly asked Sullivan to resign over “philosophical differences.”

The Board of Directors, according to The Washington Post, has called an emergency meeting for next Monday but has not yet disclosed the reason for the meeting.

Bacon’s Rebellion has a piece on the sudden resignation of  Sullivan and takes readers through the author’s attempt to analyze and make sense of it all. The writer didn’t have much luck.

* Vice President Joe Biden will be in Virginia Thursday to deliver a high school graduation commencement speech at Tallwood High School in Virginia Beach.

This speech is as much a campaign stop as it is a commencement speech, as both the Romney and Obama camps have been targeting the swing state of Virginia.

* House Majority Leader Eric Cantor officially announced today that he would endorse Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling over Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli in next year's GOP governor's race in Virginia.

* The Maryland political consultant who was responsible for writing the 2010 Election Day robocall that was allegedly designed to suppress black voters was sentenced Wednesday to 60 days in jail.

According to The Baltimore Sun, the judge sentenced Julius Hensen after he made a defiant speech in the court in which he called the case against him a “witch hunt” and accused the judge of bias toward the prosecution.

Henson was convicted last month of one count of conspiracy to withhold an authority line from the robocall, which was made on behalf of former Republican Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr.'s campaign about two hours before the polls closed.

The call—which was made to voters in Prince George County and Baltimore—suggested to voters that they could stay home and not vote because Gov. Martin O’Malley and President Barack Obama had been successful.

* Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli has finally gotten behind Senate hopeful George Allen.

A day after Allen won the GOP primary in a landslide, Cuccinelli officially endorsed Allen and called on Virginia to rally behind the former Republican governor.

Via a press release from the Allen campaign:

“This election is about protecting Virginians’ freedom and opportunity from an overreaching federal government,” said Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli. “George Allen’s record shows that he believes that government should serve the people, not be an impediment to Virginia families and small businesses. When he was Governor, George cut taxes by $600 Million, built up the Rainy Day fund, and helped lead the creation of 300,000 new private sector jobs. By contrast, when he was Governor, Tim Kaine supported $4 Billion of tax hikes, raided the Rainy Day fund and presided over the loss of 100,000 jobs. As Senator, George Allen was one of 15 to vote against the bridge to nowhere and fought for a Balanced Budget Amendment to the Constitution.”

* Washington City Paper’s new blogger Will Sommer wrote about a foreboding flyer circulating on the D.C. side of Chevy Chase warning residents to “BEWARE OF KILLER.”

The flyer says a man living in Chevy Chase was convicted of voluntary manslaughter in 2006. After getting out of prison last year he apparently went back to residing in Chevy Chase.

WCP wrote that it could not find evidence to confirm the information on the flyer.

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