Petition aims to block Pence visit to Lee University

Vice President Mike Pence speaks at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC), at National Harbor, Md., Thursday, Feb. 22, 2018. Pence said that in a meeting with governors at the White House Monday, they and Trump will “make the safety of our nation’s schools and our students our top national priority.” (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

A new petition is seeking to block a planned visit this weekend by Vice President Mike Pence to a Cleveland, Tenn., university.

The petition, launched this week on by student Cedes Harris on behalf of "concerned students, faculty and alumni" of Lee University, asks school administrators to cancel Pence's Saturday appearance at Pangle Hall.

In its plea to the university, the petition says the vice president doesn't represent the Christian school's beliefs, which seek to "embody the life and example of Jesus Christ."

The Saturday event is sponsored by America First Policies, a nonprofit organization that aims to teach attendees how tax cuts and jobs act will impact individuals, the state and the nation, according to event information. It will begin at 11:15 a.m.; doors will open at 9:15 a.m. It is first come, first serve.

In addition to the petition, a protest is planned at the campus during the panel. It will take place from 7:30 a.m.-2 p.m., according to information posted on a Facebook event.

Later Saturday, Pence will be in Chattanooga to boost Republican U.S. Republican Senate candidate Marsha Blackburn in a fundraiser.

Tickets for that event range from $1,000 per person to attend the reception featuring Pence up to $25,000 per couple to join a roundtable with the vice president as well as get a photo with him and attend the general reception.

Blackburn spokeswoman Abbi Sigler said the campaign is "excited to welcome Vice President Pence back to Tennessee, and we are so grateful for his support as Marsha works to take their shared conservative values to the United States Senate."