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CAMPAIGN '88 : A Matter of Degree

November 05, 1987| From the Associated Press

A small Iowa college's plan to give Vice President George Bush an honorary degree has upset some teachers and students who say the church school is getting mixed up in presidential politics.

The fuss began about a month ago when it was announced that the Republican presidential candidate would come to Northwestern College in Orange City Nov. 19 and be awarded an honorary degree at a special convocation.

"For some people it's simply the issue that this close to caucus time, whether the college intends it or not, it is somehow endorsing" Bush for President, said Stephen Cobb, a sociology professor at the school.

Cobb is one of several faculty members who have written letters to college president Jim Bultman protesting the degree for the Republican Bush.

Bultman said once Bush agreed to visit Northwestern, his name was suggested to the six-member awards committee that selects recipients for honorary degrees. He said the award "was never meant to be a political endorsement."

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