Video: Congressman Clashes with College Student

Jun 14, 2010 2:41pm

ABC’s Z. Byron Wolf reports: A video of a U.S. Congressman who grabs and questions a young man with a video camera outside a fundraiser in Washington last week quickly went viral Monday, drawing a public apology from the Congressman. The identity of the two men, who identify themselves in the video as students working on a project, is a mystery. In the video, Rep. Bob Etheridge, D-NC, is asked by the students if he “fully supports President Obama’s agenda.” Etheridge then smacks one person’s camera down while repeatedly asking “who are you?” Etheridge ultimately grabs the cameraman by the arm and then the neck.

“I have seen the video posted on several blogs,” said Etheridge in a statement Monday. “I deeply and profoundly regret my reaction and I apologize to all involved. Throughout my many years of service to the people of North Carolina, I have always tried to treat people from all viewpoints with respect. No matter how intrusive and partisan our politics can become, this does not justify a poor response. I have and I will always work to promote a civil public discourse.” Meanwhile, who are the people in the Rep. Etheridge video? Nobody knows. Michael Flynn, the Editor in Chief of BigGovernment.com, which first reported on on the video, tells ABC the video came to the website anonymously. In an email, he says “They do not work for us.They sent me the video anonymously. (They seem a little spooked about getting into an altercation with a Congressman).” The full video was posted online three days ago by a YouTube user under the handle “DCCameraGuy.” There are two different shots of the incident, both posted by DCCamerGuy. They can be viewed HERE and HERE.

The face of one the camera user who might be identified is blurred in the original posting.

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