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Occupy Chicago To ‘Celebrate’ After U Of C Postpones Condi Rice Talk

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Condoleezza Rice

Condoleezza Rice arrives at Glamour Magazine’s 21st annual Women of the Year Awards November 7, 2011 at Carnegie Hall in New York. (Credit: DON EMMERT/AFP/Getty Images)

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CHICAGO (CBS) — Occupy Chicago protesters plan to celebrate Monday, after the University of Chicago postponed a planned discussion with former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.

The discussion had been set for 7 p.m. Monday between Rice and former U.S. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson, who is now serving as distinguished senior fellow at the U of C’s Harris School for Public Policy Studies.

But due to what the U of C calls an “unforeseen scheduling conflict,” the talk has been postponed. The U of C has not set a new date.

But on its own Web site, Occupy Chicago characterized Paulson and Rice as having “backed out,” after a campaign of protest against their talk.

“A Conversation with Condoleezza Rice” was to be free, but open only to the U of C students, faculty and staff. A live webcast of the event was also planned.

In a news release, the U of C pointed out that Rice “faced a range of challenges in national security and diplomacy” as National Security Advisor and Secretary of State under President George W. Bush, but did not specify what subjects would be covered in the discussion.

“Condi brings a fascinating perspective as an accomplished academic leader who also provided strong leadership to our nation during a period of formidable international policy challenges, intense debate and transition,” Paulson said in the release.

In light of the postponement, Occupy Chicago now plans to hold a “celebration of the power of community action” rather than a protest from 6 to 7 p.m. across the street from the International House, the university-operated hostel and program center at 1414 E. 59th St. where the talk was to have been held.

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