NBC Host Megyn Kelly said on Thursday the Obama administration “swung the pendulum too far back” trying to protect the rights of college students claiming to be victims of sexual assault, as the Trump administration reportedly moves to roll back the Obama-era rules.
“I’ve been covering this closely for years, for years. And I understand the argument on the one side that we were in a position, back when I went to school, back in my day, when the pendulum was completely against the woman, right?” Kelly, herself a victim of sexual misconduct in the past, said during her program on Thursday.
“And so there was a problem that needed solving,” Kelly continued. “But I would submit that the Obama administration overcorrected the problem and swung the pendulum too far back against the accused, completely eroding their due process rights.”
Kelly made the remarks after citing report published by The New York Times on Wednesday about new policies reportedly being prepped by Education Secretary Betsy DeVosBetsy DeVosGOP lawmakers urge Cardona against executive student loan wipeout More insidious power grab than one attempted Jan. 6? Betsy DeVos not running for Michigan governor MORE regarding how universities handle sexual assault and harassment cases.
“The changes would strengthen some of the protections for those students who get accused of sexual assault on college campuses, something the Obama administration had changed,” Kelly said.
The proposed rules obtained by The Times would reportedly increase protections for students who are accused of sexual misconduct and help reduce liability for colleges and universities and encourage schools to broaden their support networks for victims.
The Times also reported that the rules would limit accountability for schools to complaints that happened on campus and were filed through proper authorities. Additionally, they would also raise the bar legally for proving a school mishandled a complaint.
Kelly pointed to a student she knew who attended Colorado State as an example of the current regulations going too far.
“Great football player, aspiring orthopedic surgeon, had a 3.7 GPA,” Kelly said. “He had a sexual relationship with a woman.”
“She asked if he was using protection. He said no. For a couple of seconds, it went on. They resolved the problem. They had a great night. They had another great night a couple nights later. All was great,” the host continued.
“She told her roommate about the situation. The roommate said those five seconds were a rape,” Kelly continued. “The girl said, 'I haven’t been raped.'”
Kelly said despite the student in question denying she had been raped, her roommate went on to report the situation to the campus authorities.
She said the student was “pulled in as an accused rapist” and was found guilty of raping the girl by the school.
“He gets suspended and cannot come back to school until the victim, the alleged victim graduates. His career was ruined,” Kelly said. “His college campus experience was ruined, his football — all of it, done. How is that fair?”
“These guys are entitled to due process and the women are entitled to due process,” she said.
“And you can’t swing the pendulum so far against the accused that it’s a slam dunk for the accusers because while most women, I believe, are telling the truth, there’s a fraction that are not,” Kelly added. “And the men accused by them, those accused by the liars need to be protected, too.”