Lewandowski slammed – but Dems have record of roughing reporters

By Cheryl Chumley

Michelle Fields is seen to the left of Donald Trump.
Michelle Fields is seen to the left of Donald Trump.

Conservative radio star Mark Levin went on a tirade against Donald Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski in a recent broadcast for what he portrayed as his manhandling of a former Breitbart writer – but when it comes to roughhousing reporters, Democrats, including one tied to President Obama’s years-ago CIA pick, seem to take the cake.

In February 2009, Gawker reported how a man escorting Leon Panetta, who had been chosen by Obama to head up the CIA, grabbed at CongressDaily reporter Chris Strohm at a hearing.

Then, Strohm told Politico he “felt this hand grab my right arm and push me aside,” and he told the source of the arm-grab, an unidentified male figure, “please don’t touch me” several times. Strohm said after repeated requests, the man let him go, Politico reported.

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Tim Starks, another reporter at this rally who worked for Congressional Quarterly, told Politico he saw first-hand how Strohm had simply approached Panetta to ask a question, but the Panetta escort began “grabbing him by the arm and moving him away,” he said, at the time.

And Starks’ reaction to the events, as they unfolded?

“I said to the guy, ‘That’s not the way you do it,'” he told Politico.

As Gawker wrote of the incident in its February 2009 piece: “The scary thing, besides that whole First Amendment violation bit? No one seems to know who Panetta’s escort is or what he does. He’s been seen escorting Panetta around D.C. since his name came up as a cabinet pick.”

But that’s not the only case.

In January 2010, a staffer for Massachusetts Democratic Senate candidate Martha Coakley was forced to apologize for physically shoving a reporter from the Weekly Standard.

Rush Limbaugh painted the scene during an early 2010 broadcast: “You know, this is amazing, folks. I don’t know if you know this or not, but last night, Martha Coakley, the Democrat candidate in Massachusetts, was in Washington for a fundraiser … [W]hen she came out of a restaurant last night, she was followed by a reporter named John McCormack. He is from the Weekly Standard. He tried to ask her a question, and somebody came and shoved him to the sidewalk into a metal railing, and he fell down on the sidewalk, and then this same person … Then [this] same person goes up and says, ‘Oh, my God, somebody fell!’ He goes down, helps the person up and then kept bumping the guy, the reporter, so he couldn’t get close to Coakley.”

And Limbaugh’s assessment of the scene?

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“Now this was assault and battery,” he said, according to a transcript of his January 13, 2010, show. “The video shows it. It was Michael Meehan, a Democrat Congressional Campaign Committee guy … he’s been imported at the last moment here to try to help out the Coakley campaign. So he pushes him. The video is clear as a bell here.”

What’s even more outrageous, Limbaugh said, is “Coakley [was] an attorney general. She stood there and watched this whole thing take place and didn’t do anything about it.”

Meehan shortly after apologized for shoving McCormack, Newsbusters reported.

Another, a couple years earlier, took place in Colorado and involved a hotel that served as a frequent meeting place for high-ranking Democrats.

In August 2008, an ABC producer was arrested in Denver while trying to take pictures of Democratic senators and bigwig party donors as they exited a Brown Palace Hotel – even though the producer, Asa Eslocker, was on a public sidewalk and police couldn’t tell ABC lawyers what his charges were. Video of the scene showed “a cigar-smoking Denver police sergeant, accompanied by a team of five other officers, [putting] his hands on Eslocker’s neck, then twist[ing] the producer’s arm behind him to put on handcuffs,” ABC reported at the time.

Police later told ABC lawyers Eslocker was charged with trespassing, interference and failing to follow a lawful order, and the arrest stemmed from a complaint from the hotel, a “central location for Democratic officials,” the news outlet reported.

Yet one more, a very recent example: As Gateway Pundit reported, Hillary Clinton’s top aide, Huma Abedin, was caught on camera physically shoving a woman during a brief interaction in February 2016.

“When the woman tried to hug Huma, she pushed the woman away and moved on,” the news blog reported. “No charges were filed.”

Former Breitbart reporter Michelle Fields filed assault charges against Lewandowski this week, alleging the campaign manager roughed her to the point of bruising her arm and claiming video of the matter proves she was wrongfully handled.

Trump, meanwhile, has come out in defense of Lewandowski, saying the video actually clears his campaign manager of wrongdoing, and suggesting Fields is using Florida law – which defines assault as pretty much any type of unwanted physical contact – for a political or personal agenda.

In one tweet, Trump wrote, as WND previously reported: “Wow, Corey Lewandowski, my campaign manager and a very decent man, was just charged with assaulting a reporter. Look at tapes – nothing there!”

One unnamed Secret Service agent, meanwhile, has given a different version of events, saying in a statement to the Daily Mail that Fields “crossed in between agents and our protectee after being told not to,” and touched Trump first, WND reported.

Levin, meanwhile, who has been an outspoken critic of Trump for some time, dug in deep in Fields’s camp during his recent broadcast, shouting at listeners while recapping the March 8 scene: “Is this what the hell you want in the White House?”

 

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