If You Attend Liberty University, Your E-Mail Address Was Sent to a Republican Candidate

Liberty U

Liberty University is selling student e-mail addresses to Republican political candidates.  Here is a taste of an article at The News & Advance:

Liberty University leased an expansive list of university-owned student email addresses to Republican Corey Stewart’s campaign for U.S. Senate in a pair of rare transactions that campaign experts said represents a new front in the growing world of digital electioneering in federal races.

The Stewart campaign paid the university a total of $9,754.80 in two separate payments, according to publicly available campaign finance reports filed with the Federal Election Commission.

It is unclear exactly how many email addresses are included in Liberty’s list but in a telephone interview University President Jerry Falwell Jr. hinted it could be in the tens of thousands.

Here is more:

Christian Griffith, a Liberty University junior, said he first noticed the campaign messages in June. Since then, his inbox has been flooded with Stewart for Senate emails.

“I got so many that they now go to my spam box,” Griffith said. “I have a piling of them sitting in my junk mail and they’re all unnecessarily aggressive.”

Griffith said the sale amounted to a one-sided endorsement of a partisan political campaign.

Read the rest here.

3 thoughts on “If You Attend Liberty University, Your E-Mail Address Was Sent to a Republican Candidate

  1. John’s post is somewhat misleading. He states, from the top: “Liberty is selling student email addresses to R political candidates.”

    True, as far as it goes. But Liberty has, for decades, been selling student email addresses to political candidates of ANY party who are willing to buy them. Here’s the relevant graph from the linked piece:

    “Liberty University provides liberty.edu email addresses and mailing addresses at a set rate when a political campaign requests them,” Corry said. “This rate is consistently charged to all campaigns on an equal basis, without regard [for] political party, campaign platform or public office sought.”

    Now, is it likely that state and local R candidates would be far more interested in mining Liberty addresses than D’s, given the school administration’s political alignment and its student body demographics? Sure. And do I think this is a distasteful practice and a very bad look? Yes. Were I a student or a parent of one who attended LU, it would vex me.

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    • I cannot recall all of the specifics, but it seems there was a case where a local PBS affiliate got into a controversy by selling its mailing list to the local DEM party. At least, I think it was sold but might have even been donated. Can’t recall. Also I think it was in Boston. I don’t recall if anyone got into hot water over it, but most observers agreed that it was inappropriate.
      The parallel with Liberty University is obvious. A plurality or possibly even a majority of PBS viewers are DEM-oriented. Liberty U. flows in the opposite direction. The distasteful thing about the PBS mailing list sale is that PBS is a quasi-governmental entity.

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