The ‘bully’ billionaire who led calls for Claudine Gay’s Harvard exit

The ‘bully’ billionaire who led calls for Claudine Gay’s Harvard exit

The Guardian reports:

Chief among the campaigners celebrating the resignation of Claudine Gay as president of Harvard University was a man who arguably did the most to push Gay, Harvard’s first Black president, out the door: Bill Ackman, a billionaire hedge-fund manager and Harvard alumnus.

Ackman, who accused Gay of antisemitism and plagiarism, was a major player in what increasingly became a rightwing campaign against the Harvard president – who said many of the attacks against her were “fueled by racial animus”.

In the past month alone, the 57-year-old has tweeted about Gay, Harvard, or both, more than 100 times to his 1 million followers. On Tuesday, he topped that with a rambling 4,000-word X post about “racism against white people”; universities’ efforts to increase diversity; and accusations that student groups were “supporting terrorism”.

Ackman’s campaign came after “years of resentment”, the New York Times reported, in part because his donations to Harvard did not give him greater influence over the university.

A previous donor to the Democratic party, Ackman has denied he has rightwing politics. But his campaign has been seized upon by conservatives and a Republican party that have long been resentful of an alleged liberal bias, and of affirmative action efforts, on college campuses and elsewhere – something commenters pointed out after Gay’s resignation. [Continue reading…]

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