Stupid: Paul supporter stomps protester at debate; Update: 2nd incident injures Paul supporter; Update: Paul supporter apologizes

posted at 12:43 pm on October 26, 2010 by Ed Morrissey

Want to bet this gets a little more media play than the SEIU thug that beat Ken Gladney in St. Louis earlier this year? That’s why this is stupid as well as criminal. In an attempt to shield Rand Paul from a protester who wanted to get Paul on camera in a protest stunt with a “Republicorp” sign, a handful of Paul supporters grabbed the protester and threw her to the ground, while one stomped on her back:

Absolutely indefensible. Regardless of the woman’s intent, she has as much right to be in that public venue as Paul’s supporters. They have no right to assault her just because she’s holding a ridiculous MoveOn sign or even approaching the candidate. The sign, by the way, refers to MoveOn’s new campaign to focus attention on spending by outside groups in support of Republican candidates as uber-Establishment types, a fairly laughable effort considering the amount of money spent by MoveOn, unions, and other outside groups on behalf of Democrats, which went 2-1 in Democrats’ favor in 2006 and probably more in 2008.

This is one of the reasons why it’s incumbent on candidates to provide their own security. While guard firms rely on the same legal principles of citizens’ arrest that apply to everyone else, they get a lot more training in it than rally attendees. Paul has his own security with him, as the video seems to show, and they knew better than to react to an obvious provocation, and especially not to overreact to it.

The person in this video shown stomping on the prone woman should be facing charges of assault and battery today, just as Gladney’s attacker should have to answer for his assault. And in the future, perhaps calmer heads will prevail.

Update: This is equally stupid:

The second occurred after a Conway supporter stepped on the foot of a female Rand supporter, who recently had foot surgery, according to police.

The woman was wearing a surgical boot, but after the injury, her incision was cut open. Police say she refused medical treatment and also filed an assault report.

Violence in politics is unacceptable no matter which side indulges in it.  Dan O’Herlihy has a message for those who get out of hand…

Update II: Some have speculated that this was a setup, but a later report shows that it wasn’t.  The man in the video shown stomping on the back of the protester has now apologized:

A Rand Paul supporter is apologizing after he was seen on video stepping on a liberal activist’s head.

Tim Profitt, a volunteer with the Republican’s U.S. Senate campaign, told The Associated Press on Tuesday that the camera angle made the scuffle Monday night appear worse that it was. He criticized police for not stepping in and says other supporters warned authorities about the activist. …

The Paul campaign cut ties with Profitt, removing him from his role as Bourbon County campaign coordinator and banning him from campaign events.

That’s the appropriate response.

Update III: Paul’s campaign has issued a statement, courtesy of Stacey McCain:

“The Paul for Senate campaign is extremely disappointed in, and condemns the actions of a supporter last night outside the KET debate. Whatever the perceived provocation, any level of aggression or violence is deplorable, and will not be tolerated by our campaign. The Paul campaign has disassociated itself from the volunteer who took part in this incident, and once again urges all activists — on both sides — to remember that their political passions should never manifest themselves in physical altercations of any kind.”

Exactly.


Related Posts:

Breaking on Hot Air

Blowback

Note from Hot Air management: This section is for comments from Hot Air's community of registered readers. Please don't assume that Hot Air management agrees with or otherwise endorses any particular comment just because we let it stand. A reminder: Anyone who fails to comply with our terms of use may lose their posting privilege.

Trackbacks/Pings

Trackback URL

Comments

Comment pages: 1 5 6 7

cornfedbubba on October 26, 2010 at 4:22 PM

And then there’s the left-wing trolls who can’t lift anything to a woman in real life.

I recall his bulls**t to Jenfidel, and while I have no love lost for her, I’m at a loss as to how ernesto still remains to slander the community here.

MadisonConservative on October 26, 2010 at 4:41 PM

Ryan Anthony on October 26, 2010 at 4:26 PM

Ha! I am never politically correct. Do you know what “:)” signifies?

Buy Danish on October 26, 2010 at 4:41 PM

Probably wouldn’t say this, either:

Hero? More like useless pushover, if he wound up dead at the hands of those mexicans you hate so much. I wouldn’t be too proud of hailing from such an obviously weak bloodline.

ernesto on June 25, 2010 at 11:13 PM

Again, this is simply an opinion from a non-sociopath, so it doesn’t really apply to ernesto.

Good Solid B-Plus on October 26, 2010 at 4:41 PM

I’m sorry, where in the original vid was the man’s political stance identified?

What we do know is that a woman rushed out of nowhere toward a political candidate in a divisive race, and in that respect I am a non-partisan defender.

Bishop on October 26, 2010 at 4:22 PM

The Rand Paul t-shirt on one of them and the Rand Paul button on the other wasn’t a clue as to their political leanings? Really?

What is a non-partisan defender? Are you trying to say that any political event you attend (they’re all divisive, there’s no such thing as a contested election without divisiveness), you’d restrain anyone who rushed towards the candidate?

Really?

ButterflyDragon on October 26, 2010 at 4:42 PM

Good Solid B-Plus on October 26, 2010 at 4:37 PM

Ouch. But I remember the original post, ernesto being under the illusion that all HA commenters are white.

Bishop on October 26, 2010 at 4:43 PM

Now if her jacket were to be hiding a suicide bomb belt…oh come off it, Bishop, who would try to conceal a bomb under their clothing???

Bishop on October 26, 2010 at 4:25 PM

So the woman who had a cast or whatever on her foot that was stomped on deserved it? I mean the Conway supporter probably felt it concealed a few ounces of C4 and thought he could at least destroy the ignition device……./sarc

It takes an enormous amount of silly to equate a placard with a threat. Next you will be saying she thought he was a vampire and the stake was a weapon…

Bradky on October 26, 2010 at 4:44 PM

The Rand Paul t-shirt on one of them and the Rand Paul button on the other wasn’t a clue as to their political leanings? Really?

Sorry, I didn’t look that close.

What is a non-partisan defender? Are you trying to say that any political event you attend (they’re all divisive, there’s no such thing as a contested election without divisiveness), you’d restrain anyone who rushed towards the candidate?
Really?
ButterflyDragon on October 26, 2010 at 4:42 PM

No I can’t say that I would rush to restrain anyone, I’m not sure how I would react and I suppose it depends on the situation, so I’m not about to judge these guys around Rand.

By non-partisan I meant that I have no problem with people around a candidate reacting to someone who acted that way Valle did, regardless of their political affiliation. Kook rushes from a crowd without warning and tries to get close to a candidate, put them on the ground and worry about the details later.

Bishop on October 26, 2010 at 4:47 PM

Ouch. But I remember the original post, ernesto being under the illusion that all HA commenters are white.

Bishop on October 26, 2010 at 4:43 PM

There are non-white folks here?!

Well darn, I might have to pack my e-bags and head to Stormfront with Narutoboy.

Good Solid B-Plus on October 26, 2010 at 4:50 PM

So any woman wearing a wig at a political event is to be considered “in disguise”? I never knew wigs were such hot potatoes of legal problems.

MadisonConservative on October 26, 2010 at 1:46 PM

Probably when she ran at a US Senate candidate.

Context.

tetriskid on October 26, 2010 at 1:51 PM

Ahhh, context. That is indeed the word.

For example, you would ordinarily sympathize with a woman who was either stomped or “restrained with a foot.” But in this case, the woman should be congratulated rather than pitied, because she got exactly what she was looking for. She wanted to be on the news making her adversaries look bad.

Context.

A wig is hardly a disguise. Unless, of course, you’re disguising yourself with it. No one thinks a scarf and sunglasses is

Context.

It’s a shame that this woman was able to get the video she wanted. The video certainly looks bad. I’m unable to view it at work, but that may be better. Because the thing that’s almost always missing from videos of incidents like this is … context. Much like when a policeman is caught on video doing something that looks bad, the lead-up to the confrontation is missing. The only thing we know from before the video is that the woman “rushed the stage” and was wearing a wig, and that it appeared she was holding something in her hand.

That definitely raises the issue of self-defense. Women can be assassins too, especially if armed with a gun.

Let the police sort it out. If they find the “stomper” guilty of assault, so be it.

tom on October 26, 2010 at 4:51 PM

Bradky on October 26, 2010 at 4:44 PM

ROFL, I know you’re trying hard but that was just…sad.

Did cast-woman plunge from the crowd, elbowing and hobbling toward Conway saying she wanted to give him something?

Since 911 I take nothing for granted any longer, though I understand that suicide bombers would never try to, oh I don’t know, wear women’s clothing or affect other distractions to conceal their true purpose.

Bishop on October 26, 2010 at 4:53 PM

A wig is hardly a disguise. Unless, of course, you’re disguising yourself with it. No one thinks a scarf orand sunglasses is a disguise, but combined they can be worn as one.

tom on October 26, 2010 at 4:51 PM

Oops. That’s what I meant to say.

tom on October 26, 2010 at 4:57 PM

Clue for those who can use one: If she was actually “stomped”, she’d not be up and around, she’d be in a hospital bed if not intensive care.

“Stomped” my ass.

SurferDoc on October 26, 2010 at 5:02 PM

“The Paul for Senate campaign is extremely disappointed in, and condemns the actions of a supporter last night outside the KET debate. Whatever the perceived provocation, any level of aggression or violence is deplorable, and will not be tolerated by our campaign. The Paul campaign has disassociated itself from the volunteer who took part in this incident, and once again urges all activists — on both sides — to remember that their political passions should never manifest themselves in physical altercations of any kind.”

Exactly.

Yes, this is true. I was kind of hoping it was all a set up, just because I know how the left would use it. Hopefully this will be kept in some sort of perspective.

Terrye on October 26, 2010 at 5:04 PM

So the woman who had a cast or whatever on her foot that was stomped on deserved it? I mean the Conway supporter probably felt it concealed a few ounces of C4 and thought he could at least destroy the ignition device……./sarc

It takes an enormous amount of silly to equate a placard with a threat. Next you will be saying she thought he was a vampire and the stake was a weapon…

Bradky on October 26, 2010 at 4:44 PM

I don’t think it was okay to assault this woman…but I am really kind of sick of the moral outrage from the left. The left has used these tactics for years, they are famous for slapping people around, and now we all have to be subjected to this faux outrage. Spare me. Rand Paul has made it plain that he does not support this sort of thing and that should be enough. If the police want to get involved they can, beyond that it really is not an issue for the entire campaign or race.

Terrye on October 26, 2010 at 5:07 PM

Of course the very best thing about this entire situation is that if you look closely one of the people appears to be wearing a “Don’t tread on me” button.

dieudonne on October 26, 2010 at 5:13 PM

But hey, at least he respects women!

Good Solid B-Plus on October 26, 2010 at 4:26 PM

No, at least he doesn’t hit them. That doesn’t equate to respect.

ernesto, you’ve been a total troll this summer. Just because you’ve toned it down unexpectedly and without explanation doesn’t mean we have short memories. I agree that it’s wrong to hit a woman, but I don’t think everyone here is reacting to your comments as much as many are reacting specifically to you.

Esthier on October 26, 2010 at 5:13 PM

The Stomper has come forward … and apologized.

But please – let’s not let that get in the way of some good old righteous indignation toward the Tea Party and anyone they favor!

They spotted the woman before Rand Paul showed up – and realized who she was and knew – she was planning something. They alerted the police – who apparently refused to even question the woman …

“A friend of mine went up to three policeman before Rand got there, and told them about the girl who was standing there with that wig on and that she was getting ready to do something,” Profitt said. “The policemen looked at him and said that’s not our job.”

The Rand Paul campaign has disassociated themselves from the guy – and called the incident “unacceptable”. The woman is fine – complaining of “temple pain” even though she was never kicked in the head – which the video proves.

Anything else to see here?

But please – for all you Conservatives drowning in love for this woman please continue to beat up our own side.

As you were.

HondaV65 on October 26, 2010 at 5:16 PM

Of course the very best thing about this entire situation is that if you look closely one of the people appears to be wearing a “Don’t tread on me” button.

dieudonne on October 26, 2010 at 5:13 PM

OK, that actually had me lol a little.

Esthier on October 26, 2010 at 5:17 PM

Esthier on October 26, 2010 at 5:17 PM

I chuckled too.

Bishop on October 26, 2010 at 5:19 PM

Rednecks don’t typically stand on women.

You must be using redneck as a generic insult for anyone you don’t like.

tom on October 26, 2010 at 4:12 PM

Hey now, don’t you know that its of no consequence that she’s a woman! According to the HA conventional wisdom, hitting women is fine so long as shes a rabble rousing leftie!

ernesto on October 26, 2010 at 4:17 PM

Don’t try to weasel out of your comments by referring to what others said. You said that 10 observers out of 10 would identify a man standing on a woman as a redneck. Now it’s morphed to hitting women based on being rabble-rousing lefties. You were wrong on the first comment, and you’re making a straw man with the second.

tom on October 26, 2010 at 5:20 PM

Hey now, don’t you know that its of no consequence that she’s a woman! According to the HA conventional wisdom, hitting women is fine so long as shes a rabble rousing leftie!

ernesto on October 26, 2010 at 4:17 PM

No Strawnesto – that’s not what we’re saying. But keep trying.

I don’t think it’s okay to hit women at all – except …

We live in a world of asasinations and terror – and sometimes women get involved in those things.

And we already know that Democrats frequently get involved in violence … to wit SEIU violence toward Tea Partiers (well documented – with nice chunks of video).

So a woman shows up in a wig with an “employee of the month” award for Rand Paul. She’s spotted by Rand Paul supporters – who really don’t know what this woman’s intentions are. What’s the purpose of the wig? Is she trying to hide her identity? Why would she do that? Hmmmmm.

So the woman sets off a chain of events. She places herself in a crazy situation – with plans to do crazy things.

And the situation got out of hand because … guess what? The Paul supporters weren’t told about the joke she was planning!

So stupid person does stupid thing – and ends up in a stupid position.

Yawn.

As I’ve said – if a Klansman got on a soapbox and started spewing racial hatred in front of the Apollo Theater in Harlem – would I feel sorry for him if he got his ass beat?

No.

Yah – it’s his “right” to do that – but it doesn’t mean I have to stop my day and lament about the fact that his freedom of speech rights were breached.

I have no sympathy for stupidity. This woman acted stupidly.

HondaV65 on October 26, 2010 at 5:27 PM

Valle is going to appear with Olbermann on Countdown tonight. She did three interviews last night and another an hour ago. A lot of media appearances for someone who is supposed to be badly injured…

johnt on October 26, 2010 at 5:32 PM

The only you will get him to be serious is if you click to his personal page to see his latest manifesto.
Common sense does not venture in his direction very often.

Bradky on October 26, 2010 at 4:37 PM

LOL. So says HA’s expert goal post mover and covert Troll.

kingsjester on October 26, 2010 at 5:41 PM

Valle is going to appear with Olbermann on Countdown tonight. She did three interviews last night and another an hour ago. A lot of media appearances for someone who is supposed to be badly injured…

johnt on October 26, 2010 at 5:32 PM

I guess congratulations are in order, since this is exactly what she wanted.

But we get the last laugh. Since she’s appearing on Olbermann, it not like anyone will really see her.

tom on October 26, 2010 at 5:43 PM

They didn’t take her down hard enough…you can’t take someone down hard enough when they aggressively confront a candidate.
A candidate is basically defenseless regarding these kind of attacks, and next time a young gal could have a gun or a knife.
The only way to stop this stuff…is to stop it with force.
The fact that she is up and walking about…they didn’t do their job.

right2bright on October 26, 2010 at 5:50 PM

Aha. Fox News just reporting (via an interview with a witness) that Ms. Greenpeace, and possibly several others, were “charging” towards Rand Paul. Which would explain the ‘call the police’, ‘call the police’ stuff.

Buy Danish on October 26, 2010 at 6:08 PM

Violence – not good…

This might be a precursor… I hope not… 1968 was bad enough…

Khun Joe on October 26, 2010 at 6:15 PM

Violence in politics is unacceptable no matter which side indulges in it.

I hope by this Ed means, “Unprovoked violence.” Self-defense is always justified, and therefore acceptable.

tom on October 26, 2010 at 6:18 PM

I just watched this several times. While I don’t agree with the man’s actions, I don’t believe his “heel” ever touched her head. When he put weight on her shoulder, her body rolled over a bit. His heel doesn’t appear to have gone down far enough to have touched her head.

Like I said, I don’t agree with what he did, but it does not appear to be either a “kick” or a “stomp”.

If she feels wronged, she needs to file charges and use this video as evidence.

ladyingray on October 26, 2010 at 6:42 PM

The most remembered election in history? Naaa 2012 is going to make this look sane.

upinak on October 26, 2010 at 12:58 PM

Speaking of dirty tricks, did you know that in many states–like mine–the people involved in Get Out the Vote projects have incredible amounts of power over the persons they transport to the voting booth.

First, GOTV “volunteers” are allowed to give the voter an amount of money equal to the cost of transportation to and from the polling site up to $20. If the volunteer also transports them, that cost should be zero, but who’s to know? Then the $20 fee becomes a payoff.

GOTV “volunteers” are allowed to assist any voter who requests assistance in the polling booth, even to the point of pushing the button or pulling the lever for the voter. Many are coached in the van to request assistance (in exchange for that $20!).

GOTV “volunteers” are limited to helping 8 persons (at a time or total??). So there is a limit to how much fraud one GOTV “volunteer” can manufacture, and certainly not all GOTV programs are manipulating their voters. However, you can also see how an efficiently-run GOTV effort can steal an election totally legally by manipulating persons who really want that $20 payoff and have been told it’s ok to take.

One van of 8 manipulated seniors from a nursing home cancels out the votes of 4 passionate, Gadsden-flag-waving, well-informed, Constitution-quoting families. All voters are equal.

Assuming the fraud in this election is manageable, we need to spend the next 2 years learning and developing tactics and counter-tactics. 2012 will be an Electoral War the US has never seen.rwenger43 on October 26, 2010 at 12:19 PM

Re-posted from another thread.

rwenger43 on October 26, 2010 at 6:46 PM

If she feels wronged, she needs to file charges and use this video as evidence.

ladyingray on October 26, 2010 at 6:42 PM

Believe, she doesn’t feel wronged at all. She got exactly the response she was looking for.

But I agree, it was not a kick or stomp. And if no assault charges are ever filed, I would have to consider the whole accusation of assault as unproven, since it was never investigated completely by the police, and could possibly be justifiable as self defense.

tom on October 26, 2010 at 6:47 PM

but I am really kind of sick of the moral outrage from the left. The left has used these tactics for years, they are famous for slapping people around, and now we all have to be subjected to this faux outrage. Spare me. Rand Paul has made it plain that he does not support this sort of thing and that should be enough. If the police want to get involved they can, beyond that it really is not an issue for the entire campaign or race.

Terrye on October 26, 2010 at 5:07 PM

As Ed noted above

The Paul campaign cut ties with Profitt, removing him from his role as Bourbon County campaign coordinator and banning him from campaign events.

Spare me the faux victim role. This was Paul’s campaign coordinator in one of the counties – not just a random supporter. Ed also showed the dozens of conspiracy comments were incorrect.
Miller used a security firm that has ties to a well known militia leader and the two security people in the story are active duty military – a clear violation of UCMJ for those members. But I suppose you would see this as a leftie setup rather than a legitimate question for Miller about his judgment.

Bradky on October 26, 2010 at 7:15 PM

By non-partisan I meant that I have no problem with people around a candidate reacting to someone who acted that way Valle did, regardless of their political affiliation. Kook rushes from a crowd without warning and tries to get close to a candidate, put them on the ground and worry about the details later.

Bishop on October 26, 2010 at 4:47 PM

I can respect your position. But keep in mind that what we’re doing now, discussing this in the blogosphere, is one of those details that would have to be worried about when making a decision.

ButterflyDragon on October 26, 2010 at 7:39 PM

Miller used a security firm that has ties to a well known militia leader and the two security people in the story are active duty military – a clear violation of UCMJ for those members.

Bradky on October 26, 2010 at 7:15 PM

Care to elucidate on that a bit? A security job is just a job. Active duty military need permission from their CO before moonlighting, but if that permission is there, then I don’t see how it would be a violation of the UCMJ.

And the part about “ties to a well-known militia leader” seems just a bit silly. For all the hyperbole about the militias on TV shows, there seems to be no substance to concerns about their extremism. Unless you have information that this “militia leader” has violated the law in some way, it’s hardly a matter of huge concern.

tom on October 26, 2010 at 7:47 PM

Mr. Paul should go the extra mile and give both women a phone call and express his hope that they are okay and that the incident isn’t what any of us should want to see.

Cindy Munford on October 26, 2010 at 8:45 PM

So much concern!

Mr. Daschle?

Inanemergencydial on October 26, 2010 at 9:51 PM

tom on October 26, 2010 at 7:47 PM

Read it and weep…

http://www.dod.mil/dodgc/defense_ethics/ethics_regulation/1344-10.html

b. A member on AD shall not:

(1) Use his or her official authority or influence for interfering with an election; affecting the course or outcome of an election; soliciting votes for a particular candidate or issue; or requiring or soliciting political contributions from others.

(2) Be a candidate for, or hold, civil office except as authorized in subsections D.2. and D.3., below.

(3) Participate in partisan political management, campaigns, or conventions.

(4) Make campaign contributions to another r of the Armed Forces or an employee of the Federal Government.

Look up the Name Norm Olson and you will see his connections to DropZone, the Michigan militia and the Alaska Independence Party.

Bradky on October 26, 2010 at 10:07 PM

Why was the woman wearing a blonde wig?

CWforFreedom on October 26, 2010 at 10:20 PM

Poor Ernesto… He has gone from being a highly irritating ‘little juanito one note’ race pimp to.. merely… tiresome.

LegendHasIt on October 27, 2010 at 12:46 AM

Comment pages: 1 5 6 7