The University of Maryland, College Park says it “must allow” the campus Student Power Party to stage a free speech forum tonight, even though that forum will include a viewing of excerpts from Pirates II, the film that the university refused to allow students to screen on campus last week.

Meanwhile, the state legislator who over the weekend threatened to eliminate UMD’s funding if the film was shown is now saying he may seek to cut the university’s capital budget.

Here’s the Facebook page for tonight’s screening, which was scheduled to start at 7 pm, and Gawker’s take on the whole thing.

Tuesday update: The forum and screening went off without a hitch, and the state senator who was threatening to cut UMD’s funds backed down — sort of. He now says that he won’t seek to cut funding over last night’s event, but will press universities to implement policies that say “you can’t have university-sponsored XXX entertainment on campus” going forward.

About two hundred students showed up last night, watching the first half hour of the movie after a discussion of campus speech issues. When asked why they hadn’t shown the whole thing Student Power Party spokesperson Malcolm Harris said “you’d be hard-pressed to find a lot of students who want to sit around for a two-and-a-half-hour viewing of pornography on a Monday night.”

Student government elections are taking place today and tomorrow at UMD, with the Student Power Party running as one of four slates.