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Kansas Gov.: Teen Doesn't Need To Apologize For Tweet

There's no need for 18-year-old Emma Sullivan to apologize and his staff overreacted by telling officials at her high school that the teen had tweeted about how the governor "sucked," Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback (R) said today.

Sullivan's rather rude remark, which she tweeted last week as she and other Shawnee Mission East students listened to the governor during a Youth in Government program, has been getting national attention after she refused to follow Prinicipal Karl R. Krawitz's order to send Brownback a letter of apology. Sullivan said such an apology wouldn't have been sincere.

Now Brownback has weighed in, and says his staff overreacted when it saw Sullivan's tweet and alerted Shawnee Mission East officials.

"For that I apologize," Brownback says in a statement, according to the Lawrence Journal-World. "Freedom of speech is among our most treasured freedoms. ... I also want to thank the thousands of Kansas educators who remind us daily of our liberties, as well as the values of civility and decorum. ..."

Brownback's complete statement is on his official Facebook page.

Copyright 2011 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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