An Iowa state lawmaker has proposed a new law—dubbed “suck it up, buttercup”—that would penalize universities that try to spend public money to coddle students who simply cannot cope with election outcomes they don’t like.
Specifically, Rep. Bobby Kaufmann wants universities to disclose any funds they spend on efforts to help students traumatized by the outcome of the presidential election. Once he gets those figures, Kaufmann has proposed the statehouse multiply the sum by two or three and subtract it from the university’s budget the next year.
Kaufmann says he wouldn’t target normal counseling services, just any post-election meltdown monies: “I’m specifically referring to the political hysteria of those who cannot fathom that Hillary Clinton lost. … ‘Your candidate didn’t win? We’re going to bring in ponies for you to pet and coloring books for you to color.”
Kaufmann says the response to his legislation idea has been overwhelming. He’s done dozens of radio and TV spots in the past two days, and he says he’s also received hundreds of emails from supporters of such a measure.
“It’s like nothing I’ve ever seen before,” he tells Heat Street, adding that he hopes other states will follow suit.
The day after the election, Iowa State University administrators announced it would create a “support space” for students to “process, find support, or just find a space to unplug and decompress” after the election, with counseling services available. But the university told the Associated Press it did not spend any extra public funds on the effort.
— Jillian Kay Melchior writes for Heat Street and is a fellow for the Steamboat Institute and the Independent Women’s Forum.