Hayden Williams: Trump's free speech executive order 'a big step in the right direction' (VIDEO)

  • Leadership Institute Field Representative Hayden Williams joined Fox & Friends Sunday to discuss President Donald Trump's intention to sign a new executive order.
  • Trump said Saturday the order would tie federal funding for colleges to their support for free speech.

Leadership Institute Field Representative Hayden Williams, who was violently assaulted while recruiting conservative activists at the University of California-Berkeley, praised President Donald Trump's stated intention to sign an executive order tying federal funds to free speech on college campuses. 

Williams, an employee of Campus Reform's parent organization, said on Fox & Friends Sunday that the move is a game changer for free speech.

"This is a big step in the right direction..."   

"This is a big step in the right direction as far as making sure that everyone has a right to voice their opinions on campus and you don't have to abide by these arbitrary codes," Williams said.


On Saturday, President Donald Trump, while speaking at the Conservative Political Action Conference near Washington, D.C., invited Williams on stage and said that Williams "took a hard punch in the face for all of us." Trump later announced his intent to sign an executive order tying federal funds to colleges supporting the right to free speech. 

"If they want our dollars...they've got to allow people like Hayden and many other young people and old people to speak," Trump said. 

Following the Feb. 19 incident involving Williams, UC-Berkeley Chancellor Carol Christ released a statement, saying, "let there be no mistake, we strongly condemn violence and harassment of any sort, for any reason. That sort of behavior is intolerable and has no place here. Our commitment to freedom of expression and belief is unwavering."

[RELATED: Trump to require colleges to support free speech if they want federal funds]

But while Trump's executive order could put federal funds in jeopardy for some state schools, those colleges could still get funding from their respective state governments, as Fox & Friends co-host Rachel Campos-Duffy pointed out. It's currently unclear whether any state governors or legislatures would follow Trump's lead in tying taxpayer funds to colleges' support for free speech on campus. 

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Jon Street
Jon Street | Managing Editor

Jon Street is a news editor for Campus Reform. Six years ago, Jon cut his reporting teeth fresh out of college as an intern at Media Research Center's CNSNews.com, where he interviewed multiple members of Congress and former presidential candidates. From there, he went on to complete a stint at Watchdog.org, where his exclusive, investigative work was picked up or cited by the New York Times, Washington Post, Fox News, National Review, and the Drudge Report, among others. More recently, Jon spent three years as an assistant editor at TheBlaze.com. In his free time, Jon enjoys trying new coffeehouses around the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area and traveling back to his home state of Missouri to spend time with his family.

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