States seek to scrap free speech zones By BENJAMIN WERMUND 03/07/17 10:00 AM EST With help from Kimberly Hefling, Caitlin Emma, Josh Gerstein, Nolan D. McCaskill, Natasha Korecki, Maggie Severns and Victoria Guida
STATES SEEK TO SCRAP ‘FREE SPEECH ZONES’: Lawmakers in a handful of states are pushing measures to eliminate so-called “free speech zones” and other university policies that limit what students can say and where they can say it. The effort comes as controversial speakers have sparked sometimes violent campus protests. The Trump administration, meanwhile, has made free speech on campus one of its few stated higher education priorities. Virginia, Missouri and Arizona have already passed laws protecting speech on campuses. Now lawmakers in New Hampshire, Washington, Texas, Kentucky, North Dakota, Colorado and Utah are proposing such bills — and many are gaining steam. The Colorado bill cleared the Senate and is supposed to get a hearing in a House committee this week. An effort in Utah cleared the House and could head to the Senate this week, after which the legislative session ends.