Contrary to widely held belief, the mayor of Flint, Michigan, did not earn a bachelor's degree from an in-state university, despite repeated claims that he did.
According to the Washington Examiner, biographies, news articles and the city's website maintained for years that Flint Mayor Sheldon Neeley graduated from Saginaw Valley State University (SVSU) with a bachelor's degree.
An investigation by Fox News Digital, however, revealed that Neeley, who is endorsed by Democrat Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, did not graduate from the school, though he did attend at one time.
On Wednesday, the city of Flint released a statement addressing the alma mater allegations and blamed any confusion about Neeley's educational background on an unidentified staffer.
"Mayor Neeley has been clear from the beginning that he received his associate's degree from Delta College and that he studied communication at Saginaw Valley State University, but did not complete a bachelor's degree," the statement read, according to ABC 12 News. "This is accurately reflected on the official website for the City of Flint, and in MLive Flint Journal candidate surveys dating back to 2001, 2007, and 2014. Any legislative biography that said otherwise was a compounded oversight made by a political staffer."
The Examiner reports that a number of websites featuring Neeley repeated the false claim of a Saginaw Valley bachelor's degree as of Tuesday.
Neeley's biography of his stint as a state legislator on Bill Track 50, his Legistorm account, the Michigan Association of School Boards and the Michigan Economic Development Corporation, on which Neeley serves as a member of the executive committee, all claimed that the Flint mayor held a bachelor's degree from SVSU. ABC 12 reports that some of those websites have since deleted the claim.
Screenshots viewed by ABC 12 show that, as late as July 2021, Flint's website made the claim. It was scrubbed from the site around that same time.
The 2019 Michigan Journal of the House of Representatives revealed that House Resolution 200, which recognized Neeley's five years as a state lawmaker, listed a bachelor's degree from SVSU as one of his accomplishments.
The discovery comes as Neeley squares off against former Mayor Karen Weaver, whom he squeaked by in 2019 with just a 200-vote advantage, according to MLive. Neeley also recently received a rare endorsement from Whitmer.
© 2023 Newsmax. All rights reserved.