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Mitch Daniels Says He Should Have Declined Paid Speech

mitch Daniels

Photo: Indiana Office of the Governor

Gov. Mitch Daniels will leave office at the end of December.

Purdue University President Mitch Daniels admits he made an error in judgement delivering a paid speech to a conservative think tank, the Center of the American Experiment.


The Journal & Courier published a public letter from Daniels in their online edition Thursday. Daniels says he has turned down several appearances due to the potential downside overshadowing any opportunity to promote the university.

Accepting this particular invitation was a close call, and I conclude that better judgment would have been to decline.

I would like to assure those concerned that I gave a scrupulously nonpartisan speech, as I had told the hosts was a requirement of my acceptance. Its themes were how to deliver basic services effectively, how to bring people together across political lines, the importance of civility in public discourse, and the centrality of social mobility and opportunity for the yet-to-haves in our society as goals of public policy

 Daniels says he should have done the same with The Center of the American Experiment and says he will use the fee he was paid to help fund scholarships that he and his wife, Cheri, have established to help Purdue students.

Network Indiana contributed to this report.

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