Student president at University of Florida faces impeachment after funding Trump Jr.’s visit
The student body president of the University of Florida is facing impeachment calls for alleged misuse of funds to bring Donald Trump Jr. and presidential campaign adviser Kimberly Guilfoyle to campus last month, according to reports.
Michael C. Murphy received a formal impeachment resolution on Tuesday for allegedly conspiring with a Trump campaign consultant to bring Trump Jr. and Guilfoyle to the Gainesville campus on Oct. 10, the Tampa Bay Times reports.
Those who support Murphy’s removal claim that emails first obtained by the school’s newspaper, The Independent Alligator, show that he agreed to pay the pair $50,000 in publicly funded student activity fees, which would violate rules banning the funds to support or oppose political campaigns.
By using the student fees to advance his “own expressed political beliefs,” Murphy endangered other students who were “marginalized by the speakers’ white nationalist supporters” and abused his power to advance a political party, according to the impeachment resolution.
Murphy, meanwhile, has previously told the student newspaper that visit by Trump Jr. and Guilfoyle – who have been dating since May 2018 – wasn’t an official campaign stop and didn’t violate university rules.
But an email that surfaced after the event shows that Murphy reached out beforehand to the national finance consultant for Trump Victory, a fundraising committee for President Trump’s reelection campaign.
The Trump reelection campaign official, Caroline Wren, declined to be interviewed when reached by the Tampa Bay Times, saying in a statement that she met Murphy for the first time in the summer.
“I followed up with him via my private email in my personal capacity and mistakenly forgot to remove my Trump Victory signature,” Wren wrote the newspaper. “After an initial call to discuss a potential visit, University of Florida representatives were connected to Donald Trump Jr.’s office.”
The move to impeach Murphy comes as President Trump’s public impeachment hearings began Wednesday on Capitol Hill.
The resolution to remove Murphy was signed by more than 100 students and alumni. Student senators will ultimately vote on his impeachment and he will be immediately suspended if two-thirds of the group votes in favor of removal, the Tampa Bay Times reports.
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