Sen. Ted Cruz accused Stanford Law School of training “left-wing radicals” and “Antifa” after a student mob shouted down a conservative federal judge.
The Texas Republican noted that Stanford Associate Dean of Diversity Tirien Steinbach lectured U.S. District Judge Kyle Duncan during the Thursday event, telling him that the raucous crowd of jeering law students would “go out into the world and be advocates.”
“Notice she didn’t say ‘attorneys,’” Mr. Cruz said Monday on his podcast, “Verdict with Ted Cruz.”
“This is Stanford Law School. They are trying to train social-justice warriors. They’re trying to train Occupy Wall Street, burn-it-all-down, left-wing radicals. They’re trying to train Antifa,” he said. “They’re not trying to train lawyers. Attorneys present arguments in front of judges.”
Mr. Cruz, a graduate of Harvard Law School, added that “I have never seen a federal judge on the left or right treated like that, ever.”
Stanford officials apologized Saturday to Judge Duncan after he was invited on campus to speak by the Stanford Federalist Society, only to be overrun by left-wing student hecklers who continually interrupted him.
The judge asked for an administrator to intervene, prompting Ms. Steinbach to take to the podium and all but blame him for the disruption, informing him that “your work has caused harm,” while insisting she supports free speech.
Stanford Law School dean Jennifer Martinez followed up Monday with an email to alumni assuring them that she and Stanford president Marc Tessier-Lavigne are “reviewing what transpired and will work to ensure that protocols are in place so that disruptions of this nature do not occur again.”
“The way the event with Judge Duncan unfolded was not aligned with our institutional commitment to freedom of speech,” Ms. Martinez told alumni. “Staff members who should have enforced university policies failed to do so and instead intervened in inappropriate ways that are not aligned with the university’s commitment to free speech.”
Calls to fire Ms. Steinbach erupted on social media after a video of the vulgarity-laden heckling went viral. The judge was ultimately escorted from the room by federal marshals.
Judge Duncan, a Trump appointee to the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, described the melee as a “staged public shaming.”
“For a good 20-30 minutes (I’m estimating), I was ruthlessly mocked and shouted down by a mob after every third word,” Judge Duncan told author and journalist Rod Dreher in a Sunday interview on Substack.
“And then Steinbach launched into her bizarre prepared speech where she simultaneously ‘welcomed’ me to campus and told me how horrible and hurtful I was to the community,” the judge said. “Then she said I should be free to deliver my remarks. Try delivering a lecture under those circumstances. Basically, they wanted me to make a hostage video. No thanks.”
Tim Rosenberger, president of the Stanford Federalist Society, said Monday that “this is what it is like every day, not just at Stanford but a lot of our universities.”
“I think a lot of us who worked very hard to get to Stanford are kind of feeling like suckers right now,” Mr. Rosenberger said on Fox News Channel’s “Tucker Carlson Tonight.” “You get here, you experience this, you sort of see that there’s a mob and there’s a way you’re expected to think.”
He said that only one law professor other than the club advisor reached out to him to show support afterward: Joseph Bankman, father of disgraced FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried.
“One professor, Joe Bankman, emailed me, and I think he’s fine with that being known,” said Mr. Rosenberger. “And our advisor obviously supported me. Within the law school, no one else. There were a few folks from other parts of the campus, but there was no widespread support, and the sense seems to be that this was basically fine.”
Mr. Cruz said that left-wing students posted flyers ahead of the speech with the names and photos of the Stanford Federalist Society board members saying they should be “ashamed,” with the word “in bright red, sort of Halloween, dripping letters.”
“This is deliberately targeting those students,” Mr. Cruz said. “If it happened on the other foot, if a conservative put up a list of pictures and names of nine liberal students, and said ‘you should be ashamed,’ I guarantee you the law school would discipline if not expel any student who did that.”
He added that “to see this happening to a judge is astonishing.”