Jonathan Turley seems to be GW’s most ubiquitous faculty member. For a while it seemed he was appearing as a talking head on several television shows simultaneously. As a prominent talking head in the ongoing Clinton scandal, Turley is an easy target for attacks.
A few weeks ago, a GW Law School student decided to take an easy shot at Turley by conducting a little experiment. His goal? To see how long it would take Turley to return two phone calls – one from a student who is not in any of Turley’s classes, the other from a supposed television producer. The purpose of the “test” was to prove Turley cared more about his fame than students, but based on other evidence, that is not the case.
Student evaluations give Turley high marks for accessibility – a 4.5 on a one-to-five scale. In addition, his students have not come rushing forward to claim he ignores them to appear on television and talk to reporters. Accusing a professor of being unresponsive to students without credible evidence wouldn’t stand up in a court of law. The same applies when one is trying to sway the court of public opinion.
While students may disagree with Turley’s viewpoints on the Clinton scandal, it is impossible to argue with the fact that he is bringing positive (and national) attention to GW. Pot-shot tests may score a few easy points in the short run and garner 15 minutes of fame, but when all the evidence is considered, Turley cannot be accused of neglecting his students. His detractors’ reliance on flimsy evidence made for a weak case.