June 17, 2011
Would be journalist and provocateur Andrew Breitbart met his match today when he tried to crash the liberal NetRoots Nation convention in Minneapolis, Minnesota. 100 Proof Politics editor Ryan Clayton was ready - and his camera and hard questions forced right wing Breitbart into a hasty retreat.
The story started the night before when two women ventured into the streets of Minneapolis wearing the traditional Hijab (headscarf.) They were approached by John Hugh Gilmore, a 52 year attorney and self described Conservative who blogs for "Minnesota Conservatives." According to police, he asked the women what they thought of Ayaan Hersi Ali, a Somali who is a fellow at the conservative American Enterprise Institute who decries Muslims. The women told him they weren't exactly fans. The inebriated Gilmore then became upset and started harassing the pair, asking what right they had to be in this country, until 60 onlookers intervened. Police were called and arrested Gilmore, but not until Gilmore tried to reach Andrew Breitbart on his phone.
Fast forward to today. Breitbart entered the Minneapolis Convention Center just minutes after Clayton had interviewed Sana Saleem, a blogger of Pakistani heritage and co-founder of Gawaahi.com, who had witnessed the confrontation. Breitbart claimed he knew nothing about the event, and a Breitbart colleague accused Clayton of lying about the whole affair, (but Minneapolis Police Department has confirmed Gilmore's arrest.)
Clayton moved beyond the Minneapolis incident into questions to confirm or deny rumors of Breitbart's alleged drug use and sexual habits. While Breitbart denied having a cocaine habit, he would not answer whether he had personally ever used cocaine. Given Hugh Hewitt's recent interview with Breitbart where Breitbart references the gay magazine "Blue Boy," Clayton also asked about Breitbart's penchant for gay magazines. At that point, without answering directly, the flustered Breitbart left the Netroots Nation convention, hounded by dozens of attendees shouting, "Coward! Coward!"