The University of Florida has denied a request from the National Policy Institute to rent space on campus for an event featuring white nationalist leader Richard Spencer, citing safety concerns following the violence in Charlottesville, Va.
"I find the racist rhetoric of Richard Spencer and white nationalism repugnant and counter to everything the university and this nation stands for," University of Florida President Kent Fuchs said in a statement.
"That said, the University of Florida remains unwaveringly dedicated to free speech and the spirit of public discourse. However, the First Amendment does not require a public institution to risk imminent violence to students and others," Fuchs said.
Spencer's organization, the National Policy Institute, asked to rent space at the University of Florida, located in Gainesville, for an event Sept. 12.
Fuchs said in his statement the decision to deny the National Policy Institute's request was made after "assessing potential risks" with campus, local, state and federal law enforcement, as well as continued calls for violence on social media, which said, "The Next Battlefield is in Florida."
The University of Florida's decision to deny the National Policy Institute's request follows a similar decision at Texas A&M University to cancel a Sept. 11 event featuring Spencer.
White nationalist groups clashed with counter-protesters in Charlottesville on Saturday.
One woman died and another 19 others were injured after a man plowed his car into a crowd of counter-demonstrators.