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Published May 12 2013

Forum editorial: Higher ed member wins roses

PRAIRIE ROSES: To Sydney Hull, the student member of the North Dakota Board of Higher education, for his courage to challenge the leadership of the board over the management style of embattled Chancellor Hamid Shirvani. For a while, Hull was alone in shining a light on what he believed to be misconduct by the chancellor, and violation by the board of the state’s open meeting laws. Hull eventually found support for his concerns in the university system office, among legislators, with the attorney general and on the editorial pages of the state’s newspapers. Hull’s public objections to the board’s actions stand in contrast to the initial silence of other board members and the denial of any wrongdoing by the chancellor. Hull deserves a huge bouquet.

LEAFY SPURGE: To the double standard practiced by Democrats and Republicans alike when it comes to moral failings of political candidates and officeholders. The latest hypocrisy is associated with the election last week of disgraced former South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford to the U.S. House. Sanford admitted an extramarital affair and had been out of public office for several years. He won election easily, and Democrats are appalled that the “party of family values” took Sanford back into the fold. Republicans, who never fail to remind about the moral failings of Bill Clinton and the late Sen. Ted Kennedy, seem OK with Sanford’s behavior, while Democrats blithely give Clinton and Kennedy a pass. Americans are a forgiving people … sort of.

Forum editorials represent the opinion of Forum management and the newspaper’s Editorial Board.