Tom Emmer says views cost him Hamline job

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Tom Emmer

Photo: Richard Tsong-Taatarii, Star Tribune

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Former Republican gubernatorial candidate Tom Emmer says that he is out of a job at Hamline University because of his politics.

Emmer, who lost the 2010 governor's race by 9,000 votes, said he was in deep discussions with the St. Paul school about a teaching gig and an "executive-in-residence" spot. He said he thought the deal was complete but things suddenly went awry late last month.

"I was stunned. I mean, I didn't even have words," Emmer said.

JacQui Getty, a university spokesperson, said there were "discussions" on the class and the executive-in-residence. "Although there were conversations over several months about the opportunity for Mr. Emmer to join the Hamline faculty, there was no finalized agreement between Mr. Emmer and the University," Getty said in a statement.

She did not respond to requests for clarification about whether Emmer's political views had anything to do with those discussions ending.

Emmer said his politics -- particularly his opposition to same-sex marriage -- caused the university to back away, although he supplied no proof for that assertion.

Emmer said he was particularly upset that a Dec. 6 article in the school newspaper that claimed Emmer was never hired. He told Hamline President Linda Hanson in a letter that he was "owed an apology and retraction" of that article. As of Tuesday the article was still on the paper's website.

Since the Hamline arrangement fell apart, Emmer took on the Minnesota chairmanship of the Faith & Freedom Coalition, a conservative group. But, he said, he still wants to find a teaching job.

"I think I've got something to offer," Emmer said. "I'm going to keep trying."

Rachel E. Stassen-Berger Twitter: @rachelsb

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