HOH’s One-Minute Recess: Etheridge’s Run-In Goes Viral

Posted June 14, 2010 at 10:55am

Rep. Bob Etheridge was a YouTube sensation Monday morning — but probably not in the way that he’d hope to be. A video video is making the rounds of the North Carolina Democrat grabbing the wrist and neck of a young man who identifies himself as a student working on a project. “Who are you?” the Congressman repeatedly asks the man.

Uh-oh. Etheridge has joined the YouTube-meltdown club.

Etheridge’s blowup is similar to a few other meltdowns that have proved popular on YouTube. It reminded HOH of the testy exchange between ABC News reporter Dan Noyes and a hospital spokesman. In that video, the spokesman puts his hands on Noye’s shoulder, causing Noyes to repeatedly tell him, “Do not touch me! Get your hand off me!”

The Etheridge incident seems to be causing a comparable stir.

“Congressman Attacks Student” reads the headline of the story on Andrew Breitbart’s conservative website Big Government, which appears to be the first outlet to post the video. In a story accompanying the video, Big Government Editor in Chief Mike Flynn says it took place outside a “fundraiser headlined by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.”

The young man asks Etheridge whether he “supports the Obama agenda,” a question that clearly draws the Congressman’s ire. Etheridge responds by knocking the video camera out of the hands of the guy filming the incident and then grabbing his wrist and refusing to let go.

Not exactly southern gentleman stuff.

Etheridge’s press secretary did no return HOH’s call or e-mail seeking a response.

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