The Oxford Union has been accused of “no platforming” the head of a prominent right-wing Catholic organisation.
William Donohue, President of the Catholic League, an American civil rights group, claimed he had been unceremoniously “uninvited” to speak at an upcoming debate.
The debate, titled This House Believes The Catholic Church Can Never Pay For Its Sins, is due to be held this term. Mr Donohue said he is “appalled” at the way he has been treated by the 800-year-old debating society.
“Either no one will debate – this has happened to me many times before so I’m no rookie to this,” he said.
“Or someone got to [the Union President] and said: ‘You don’t want to give this guy Donnie a platform’. Whatever it is, it’s either one of those two.
“This is not a matter of misunderstanding, it’s not a matter of a glitch or a mistake. This is deliberate and calculated and it is all political.”
The Oxford Union wrote to him in December asking him to speak in the debate and when he accepted the invite he was told that they would be “honoured” to host him. But he was later told that the Union had “filled the debate” so his attendance was no longer required.