To an extent, some form of this campaign opposition stuff has been around forever. You go to a campaign event, there’s a guy with an opponent’s sign trying to get it in the line of the TV cameras. The other campaign gets a bunch of people with signs to surround and block them.Hub Blog’s response: Let’s not forget lefties Michael Moore and Baron Cohan have made careers doing exactly what O’Reilly et gang have done. OK? … As for charges that the Weekly Standard’s John McCormack was the victim of assault and battery, I don’t buy it. But he is the victim of a disturbing ‘imperial’ politician trend that I’ve written about here and here. The fact is John isn’t a Tea Party whacko or paparazzi. He’s a working journalist, and Coakley’s aide couldn’t and didn’t distinguish between the two. The initial shove I can explain away as an accident. The blocking antics were not. McCormack is owed an apology. No more. No less. … Dan has more.
But shouting or interrupting and event—by either Donkeys or Elephants—goes over the line. … Yes, we’re in a democracy. I’m a HUGE fan of protecting free speech. But can’t we have some level of respectful dialogue?
I’m not sure which (Hannity, Beck, O’Reilly) but I’ve seen them send these young folks out to “interview” candidates or elected officials. It’s pretty clearly harassment, meant to annoy candidates or catch some sort of embarrassing slip. Having someone from the campaign block their access seems a logical reaction. Does anyone really like the paparazzi? I don’t remember many people having a problem when Sean Penn or Bruce Willis or one of the others jumps ugly with the stalkers. So I don’t have a problem with this guy from the Coakley campaign. He really didn’t even get physical with him.
The Weekly Standard—and Boston Herald—can spare me the “thug” rap and carrying on as if the guy was taken off to a work camp.