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Wednesday, May 23, 2007
Sheppard Bashes Edwards' Commencement Speech Fee -- But Giuliani Charges More
Topic: NewsBusters

In a May 22 NewsBusters post on John Edwards receiving a $55,000 fee to give a college commencement speech, Noel Sheppard writes, "If a Republican presidential candidate like Rudy Giuliani or John McCain charged a $55,000 fee to speak at a major university about poverty, would the media be all over it like white on rice?"

The answer is no. As Media Matters notes, Giuliani received nearly double that to give a commencement speech: He reportedly charged Oklahoma State University $100,000 for a speech he delivered in 2006 and an additional $47,000 for the use of a private Gulfstream jet. The Chicago Tribune adds that his visit "essentially wiped out the student speakers annual fund." The Tribune also reports:

Like other high-priced speakers in the private sector, Giuliani routinely travels in style. Besides the Gulfstream, which is a standard perk on the big-time speakers circuit, his contract calls for up to five hotel rooms for his entourage, including his own two-bedroom suite with a preferred balcony view and king-size bed, in the event of an overnight stay.

The Oklahoma contract also required a sedan and an SUV, restrictions on news coverage and control over whom Giuliani would meet, how he would be photographed and what questions he might be asked.

We're shocked -- shocked! -- that Sheppard finds Edwards' comparatively small speaking fee newsworthy but says not a thing about Giuliani's sky-high fee and patrician perks that bankrupt college students.

Posted by Terry K. at 9:22 AM EDT

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