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‘Manhandled’: Democrat Arrested at Eric Cantor Campaign Stop

October 27, 2010

A Louisa County, Va., man was arrested Monday on charges he was “trespassing, resisting arrest and creating a public disturbance” during a campaign stop for Republican House Whip Eric Cantor at a local coffee shop, reports the Richmond Times Dispatch.

Jon Taylor, a Democrat, complained that he was “manhandled” by local police authorities after he refused to leave the coffee shop at the owner’s request. It’s unclear why the shop owner asked Taylor and three others to leave the property, though the local press reports the group had signs calling Cantor a chicken for refusing to debate his Democrat opponent, Rick Waugh. Taylor, a Waugh supporter, said he had RSVP‘d online for the Cantor event and assumed it was a public event.

When the shop owner asked Taylor to leave, he refused, prompting the local police authorities to escort him out. A video of an ensuing skirmish was captured on a cell-phone video shot by his son and shows Taylor being wrestled to the ground after he appears to resist arrest.

(Warning: some mature language — view discretion is advised)

Though Cantor reportedly arrived at the coffee shop after the disturbance happened, liberal bloggers have seized on the internet video as an example of “GOP thuggery.”

The Cantor camp simultaneously linked its Democratic opposition to the incident.  “This is a pattern with Rick Waugh of disruptive and frankly thuggish behavior,” said Cantor spokesman Ray Allen, Jr. “And frankly, he needs to get control of his campaign.”

The Waugh campaign said it had nothing to do with the disturbance and does not condone such activity.

Taylor claims the local police department was “used by Eric Cantor’s campaign to make a political statement.”  But the the Louisa County police department has denied the charge and said that two other people asked to leave left without having to be restrained.

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