Tweet: White nationalist Richard Spencer’s tour manager seeking space to speak at Kent State on May 4


Screenshot of Kyle Bristow’s tweet on Jan. 17, 2018. 

Henry Palattella

A tweet sent Wednesday by Kyle Bristow, a lawyer who represents white nationalist Richard Spencer’s National Policy Institute, said Spencer’s college tour manager is working to reserve the Kent State Multicultural Center on May 4.

The tweet, sent at 1:25 p.m., said Cameron Padgett intends to speak at Kent State and would invite white nationalists Spencer and Mike Enoch to speak at “the publicly available Student Multicultural Center.” Bristow tagged both Padgett and Spencer in the tweet — the account about Enoch that was tagged is identified as a parody account.

Eric Mansfield, Kent State’s executive director of media relations, declined comment on the tweet.

KentWired obtained a copy of Padgett’s request to speak on May 4 through an email sent by Bristow. (See the full email below.) Padgett starts the email by writing that he would “like to request the Student Multicultural Center (auditorium-style up to 200 people), but a comparable lecture hall would suffice.”

Bristow, who is also Padgett’s attorney and is licensed to practice law in Ohio and Michigan, has worked with Padgett to try to book Spencer on college tours before and threatened to sue the University of Michigan if it didn’t let Spencer speak. The two parties are currently working on organizing a date for him to speak on Michigan’s campus.

Seven college campuses denied Spencer’s requests to speak, including Ohio State, which listed security concerns as the reason it denied him access. Spencer is currently suing the University of Cincinnati due to the $11,000 security fee the university asked for, and he is also suing Ohio State for free speech.

“The event must occur on Friday, May 4, for my purposes, because I plan to invite a number of guest speakers- including Richard Spencer of the National Policy Institute and Michael Peinovich of The Right Stuff,” Padgett’s email said. Enoch’s real name is Michael Peinovich. He also said that Peinovich and Spencer will be speaking about “the unfortunate modern trend of violent left-wing antifa protesters trying to undermine the free speech of right-wing people.”

Padgett also said the 48th anniversary of the Kent State shooting would be a “prominent theme” of the discussion. 

Spencer was permitted to speak at the University of Florida and the University of Virginia. Florida governor Rick Scott declared a state of emergency so that the different branches of law enforcement could work together during Spencer’s speech.

Enoch is best known for starting alt-right blogs known such as “The Right Stuff” and “The Daily Shoah.”

Lecia Brooks of the Southern Poverty Law Center was the keynote speaker at the May 4 ceremony last year. Samaria Rice, mother of Tamir Rice, spoke the year before.

The Southern Poverty Law Center website identifies Spencer, Enoch and Bristow as white nationalists, and Spencer as a member of the alt-right.

Padgett concluded the email by stating the group would need audio equipment for the event, asking for two microphones — one for the speakers, and one for a question and answer session with the audience.

Henry Palattella is an assigning editor. Contact him at [email protected]


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Cameron Padgett Email (Text)