Paul Ryan’s black college girlfriend is Deneeta Pope, 40, of Chicago. Paul Ryan and Deneeta Pope were college sweethearts at Miami University in Ohio; where Paul was in a fraternity and Pope was a cheerleader. Although Pope is allegedly now a supporter of President Barack Obama, she did donate $2,000 to Paul Ryan’s Congressional campaigns, according to the Daily Mail.
Deneeta Pope lives in Chicago with her second husband and works as a real estate agent. Paul Ryan publicly stated in earlier interviews that his relationship with his black college girlfriend helped forge his firm opposition to racism. The vice presidential hopeful also noted college peers, that he had counted as friends, subjected the couple to lot of “ugly comments,” according to the Daily Mail.
Paul Ryan and Deneeta Pope dated in the early 1990s, according to the campaign spokesman, Michael Steel’s comments during a Daily Mail interview on Thursday. Ryan noted during an interview in 2005 that he had experienced the ugliness of racism first hand because he had dated a black woman in college and had an African-American sister-in-law.
Deneeta Pope married her second husband, Michael Thompson, during a May 23 ceremony in Italy. Pope has not expressed any desire to discuss her college relationship with Paul Ryan with the media. She has been a registered Democrat since at least 2008. Pope donated $324 to President Obama’s campaign fund three separate times in 2009.
Paul Ryan was apparently a motivated and popular student during his high school years. He was voted prom king, class president, and was a standout basketball player. While attending Miami University, where he met Deneeta Pope, Paul Ryan joined the Delta Tau Delta fraternity. Ryan majored in both economics and political science.
Deneeta Pope is from Westerville, Ohio and attended St. Francis Desales High School. Both Ryan and Pope were reportedly extremely athletic. The Daily Mail also reports that friends of Deneeta Pope said the former Miami University cheerleader has recently been discussing Ryan on Facebook, referring to him as “my friend Paul.” Deneeta Pope was featured in a 2010 online video promotion for a full-body workout called the Bar Method, the Wall Street Journal reports. Mark Niedzielski told the Daily Mail that his first wife, Deneeta Pope, is a “great person” and is “really nice” but said the couple just grew apart.