Controversial Professor

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University of Colorado President Elizabeth Hoffman is warning lawmakers against rushing to punish controversial professor Ward Churchill.

Governor Owens has said the tenured professor should be fired for his essay likening some of the September eleventh victims to a Nazi who was the architect of the Holocaust. Owens also says the state should review tenure -- which makes it tougher to fire professors.

Legislators have threatened to yank C-U's state funding.

But Hoffman says the situation has to be handled correctly or the state could be sued. She spoke to Republican lawmakers today in Denver.

Hoffman cautions that tampering with tenure could make it harder for Colorado colleges to recruit professors.

Churchill's essay came to light last month when a student newspaper at a New York state college wrote about it. That college and two others have since canceled speaking appearances by Churchill.

The university is reviewing Churchill's work to see if there's grounds for dismissal.