Here's the UNEDITED video of Bob Etheridge's assault on a student.
Complete, un-edited Etheridge Video - Camera #1
Complete, un-edited Etheridge Video - Camera #2
Bob Etheridge has apologized for his behavior.
Rep. Bob Etheridge (D-N.C.) has apologized for actions captured in a YouTube video, featured on a conservative website, that went viral on Monday.
"I deeply and profoundly regret my reaction, and I apologize to all involved," Etheridge said in a statement. "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."
There remain questions about the video, which was said to be shot in Washington outside of a fundraiser held by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, which Etheridge attended. He is asked whether he fully supports the "Obama agenda" and responds by repeatedly asking the group, "Who are you?" It is unclear whether the video was edited. It was featured Monday on a conservative website known for its video sting of the group ACORN; the post is heavily promoted by the Drudge Report.
Etheridge has represented North Carolina's 2nd District since 1997. Among his former staffers is none other than White House press secretary Robert Gibbs, who sent this response to the home-state Raleigh News & Observer: "I've known Bob Etheridge for more than a 13 years, and I am proud to have worked for him. He is one of the most honorable people I know. Everyone makes mistakes, and I'm proud of Bob for taking responsibility and apologizing for his."
Questions remain about how the video was edited?
I think it's very clear that Etheridge assaulted the student and behaved in an inappropriate fashion.
I hope the critics apologize for the suggestions that the raw footage of Etheridge was edited unfairly.
The video shows Etheridge running amok. The embarrassment is all his. There's no defending him.
Of course, the Washington Post tries to defend Etheridge and attempts to put a humorous spin on the matter.
Members of Congress have been assaulting people for over a hundred years. Remember that time back in 1856 when Rep. Preston Brooks of South Carolina viciously caned Sen. Charles Sumner of Massachusetts on the floor of the Senate, and people responded by sending him gold-headed canes? The Richmond Enquirer noted at the time that the attack was “good in conception, better in execution, and best of all in consequences,” and an effort to expel Brooks from Congress failed. So descriptions of the student journalist’s question as “lunatic, shameless, and childish” seem, by comparison, almost polite.
It’s not that I lack sympathy for Etheridge. When people approach me with portable video cameras demanding to know if I fully support the Obama agenda, I usually panic and begin to throw things, stopping only when I realize that they were talking to someone else. But, then again, I am not an elected official.
Having been a college student, I can vouch that we are annoying, and, sometimes, our journalistic techniques lack subtlety.
That treatment of the story is inadequate.
Tough guy Etheridge should not be treated with kid gloves.
Here's Etheridge's full statement:
Washington, DC, Jun 14 - U.S. Rep. Bob Etheridge (D-Lillington) released the following statement on the viral video which appeared on the internet today:
“I have seen the video posted on several blogs. 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.”
Rep. Bob Etheridge (NC-02)
This story would not go away if a Republican physically attacked someone.
It would lead the network newscasts this evening.
Leno and Letterman would be all over it.
Will it be mentioned at all by those in positions of power?
It really doesn't matter. Thanks to the New Media, the American people know what Etheridge did. Liberals no longer control the dissemination of information. They aren't the sole authors of the nation's narrative anymore.
The fact that this video has been seen is a victory for our democracy.