DENTON, Texas — Jeff Younger, a candidate for State House District 63, was escorted out of an event he was scheduled to speak at Wednesday at the University of North Texas because of protests.
In a video circulating online, students bang on their desks and shout expletive-laced insults at him, calling him a fascist. Younger shouted back, calling them communists and Russians.
Younger has drawn criticism for his beliefs about gender-affirming health care and the treatment of his 9-year-old twins. One of them is a transgender girl. Younger eventually lost custody of both children. On his campaign website, he calls gender-affirming health care, child abuse. He is in a runoff for the GOP nomination for House District 63 against Ben Bumgarner.
The Young Conservatives of Texas hosted the event. UNT chapter President Kelly Neidert posted a video online and said she had to be escorted out of the building for safety and at one point had to hide in a broom closet.
According to a statement from UNT President Neal Smatresk, a group of protesters surrounded police vehicles containing both the Young Conservatives of Texas student organizers and Younger and attempted to block their exit from the scene by banging on the vehicles and impeding their movement.
During the confusion a student was hit by a police car, according to Denton police. Officers took a report from the injured protester, and they will forward the case to another agency for investigation.
Smatresk said police believe a small group of protesters not affiliated with the university contributed to escalating the overall protest from peaceful to an aggressive encounter.
“We have always touted the importance of freedom of expression and been proud of our students’ ability to speak up for themselves and participate in nonviolent protest. UNT Police have continuously worked to create and maintain an environment safe for all students to express themselves, regardless of topic,” Smatresk said. “As always, campus safety is our top priority, and we will continue working to provide a safe environment for our students. We have always been a passionate community that stands up for our ideals, but last night’s behavior by some individuals is not reflective of the UNT I know and love.”
Younger posted the following message on his Facebook page Friday:
"Wednesday night's antifa riot regarding my speech at the University of North Texas with the Young Conservatives of UNT exemplifies the devolving character of antifa rioters and their radically liberal acolytes. Our Republican-controlled legislature must act immediately, by banning child-transitions and protecting free speech on college campuses. I will never surrender or retreat from the left. If I’m elected, I will fight unceasingly to stop the child abuse perpetuated by thransgender ideolouges. The fight is just beginning, and we need more courageous men in the Legislature.
"The voters of Texas and HD 63 voted overwhelmingly to stop the abuse of children and enact other conservative legislation into state law. HD 63 deserves a courageous conservative who will fight for them as hard as he fights for his son. I need your help to go down to Austin, and take the fight to the radical left and save our state."