University of Alabama expected to return $21.5M over donor's abortion remarks

University of Alabama expected to return $21.5M over donor's abortion remarks
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The University of Alabama is expected to return a $21.5 million donation it received in September after the donor advised women against attending the school because of the state's new abortion ban, according to The Associated Press.

Hugh F. Culverhouse Jr. pledged $26.5 million to the university last year, $21.5 million of which he has paid so far. The relationship between Culverhouse and the school began to sour last week, though, after he called on students to boycott the university in response to a new state law, which bans abortion in almost every case except danger to the life of the mother.


“I don’t want anybody to go to that law school, especially women, until the state gets its act together,” Culverhouse, a Florida real estate investor and lawyer, said in the interview.

Shortly after Culverhouse made his comments, the university announced it was considering returning the money. The school told the AP it had been considering returning his donation before his interview, saying he had attempted to leverage the donation to influence how the school was run.

Culverhouse has said the university is lying about the timeline but acknowledged disagreements on how to handle his gift and said he told University of Alabama President Stuart Bell that the law school should admit more students.

The board of trustees will vote Friday on whether to return the gift. Over the years, Culverhouse has made more than $30 million in smaller donations to the university, none of which will be voted on during the Friday meeting.

The university’s law school, the alma mater of former Gov. George Wallace (D), Southern Poverty Law Center co-founder Morris Dees and former Attorney General Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard Sessions Senate outlook slides for GOP Supreme Court blocks order that relaxed voting restrictions in Alabama Justice Dept. considering replacing outgoing US attorney in Brooklyn with Barr deputy: report MORE, was renamed after Culverhouse following his gift, but his name may also be removed.

 “You probably shouldn’t put a living person’s name on a building, because at some point they might get fed up and start talking,” Culverhouse told the AP.