Beto O'Rourke Cancels Commencement Appearance Over Coronavirus Concerns

Another chip fell on the class of 2020 this morning, when Former Representative Beto O’Rourke cancelled his plans to speak at this year’s commencement. He cited the ongoing coronavirus crisis as the reason for his withdrawal. 

“Obviamente, estoy muy decepcionado,” O’Rourke said in a statement, “pero la lucha contra la pandemia es la máxima prioridad, y sería irresponsable a viajar a Ohio en el futuro próximo.”

At this point, O’Rourke’s flaking is yet another disappointment for current seniors, who have seen their “Senior Spring” upended by the pandemic of COVID-19. 

Said one senior who asked to remain anonymous, “I miss my friends. I miss my professors. I even miss Moxie. I was really counting on Beto being there.”

Thousands of educational institutions around the country have shuttered their doors as part of efforts to combat COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus. Some universities have also announced cancellations of in-person graduation ceremonies.

In an email to the class of 2020, President Sean Decatur promised the school would do all they could to hold an in-person commencement, even if it would mean delaying the ceremony for several months.

Regardless, O’Rourke went ahead and canceled his appearance outright.

“Through this whole thing I kept saying to myself, ‘We still have Beto. Thank god, we still have Beto,’” said another senior, who also asked to remain anonymous. “This just hurts.” 

At the moment, Kenyon’s other planned commencement speaker, television executive Samie Kim Falvey, is still slated to appear at the ceremony. 

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