First Lady Heckled by Gay Rights Advocate, Threatens to Leave Event
WASHINGTON - First lady Michelle Obama was heckled by a gay rights advocate at a fundraiser tonight and responded by threatening to leave the event, telling the protester only one of them could speak.
Obama was delivering a speech at a DNC event at a private home in Washington shortly after 6 p.m. when a protester began shouting for the president to sign an executive order to protect gay and lesbian rights, according to pool reports.
"One of the things I don't do well is this," Obama reportedly responded to loud applause. She then left the podium and walked toward the heckler, saying she could "listen to me or you can take the mic, but I'm leaving. You all decide. You have one choice."
The protester was later identified as Ellen Sturtz, an activist for the pro-LGBT rights group GetEQUAL.
The crowd begged for the first lady to stay and one woman near Sturtz shouted, "You need to go."
Sturtz was reportedly escorted out, identifying herself as a "lesbian looking for federal equality before I die."
GetEQUAL later contacted the White House press pool and said Sturtz was calling for an executive order to bar discrimination by federal contractors based on sexual orientation or gender identity.
The event, which was also attended by Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, the chair of the Democratic National Committee, was held at the home of Karen Dixon and Nan Schaffer in NW Washington.