How Hillary Clinton Made a Chipotle Manager the Most Famous Guy in Ohio for a Day
His quotes are uninspiring, but he abruptly became Ohio's top influencer.
By ERIN DOOLEY
April 16, 2015, 6:27 PM
• 3 min read
-- His quotes are uninspiring: “She got great food.” "She was just another lady." “We were trying to do our jobs.”
But somehow, abruptly, Charles Wright has become the most influential guy in Ohio politics.
Wright, the 29-year-old manager of the Maumee, Ohio, Chipotle where Hillary Clintonmade an incognito pit stop earlier this week, didn’t realize his staff was serving a presidential contender until a horde of reporters called the restaurant to confirm. Since then, he’s been bombarded by media requests.
His limited insight was gleaned mostly from security footage: Clinton was wearing sunglasses and ordered a chicken burrito bowl with guac, along with a blackberry Izzy drink.
Nevertheless, the press made much of his revelations. The Wall Street Journalsurveyed the “gastronomical symbolism” of the venue and suggested Taco Bell would have been “more electorally savvy.” CNN Money interpreted the “hip” restaurant detour as symbol of Clinton’s push to “shed that outdated 1990s stigma.” And the New York Times analyzed the burrito bowl’s caloric content and deemed it “above average.” (The Times reporter did acknowledge there were probably more important things worthy of contemplation.)
But one of Wright’s seemingly offhand comments might actually hurt the 2016 hopeful: Clinton didn’t tip.
“Her bill was $20 and some change, and they paid with $21 and left” after pocketing the change, Wright told Bloomberg.
(For those unfamiliar with the buffet-style burrito joint: There’s a tip jar near the cash register. Some tip, some don’t.)
Some Chipotle employees make just 10 cents above Ohio minimum wage -- $8.20, instead of $8.10, according to Politico. For someone who’s been criticized for being out of touch, this oversight might not play so well for Clinton. (Let’s just hope the former Secretary didn’t commit Obama’s cardinal sin – leaning over the clear plastic “sneeze guard.”)
In any case, "it's really nobody's business,” Wright said, “if somebody leaves a tip or they don’t.”