Brookfield, CT – A Democratic candidate for governor of Connecticut was forcibly dragged from a debate stage by police and arrested on Monday night (video below).
Lynn Whitnum, 57, was considered a fringe candidate by the Connecticut Democratic Party and was not invited to participate in the Brookfield Democratic Town Committee Gubernatorial Forum at Brookfield High School on April 9.
But that didn’t stop her from showing up and taking a seat on the stage, the Hartford Courant reported.
A video captured by blogger Alfonso Robinson showed the entire debacle as it unraveled, beginning with Whitnum taking a seat at the center of the candidates’ table, and refusing to leave when she was asked.
Officials tried to convince Whitnum to leave the stage, but she claimed she had worked “very, very hard” and had filed all her paperwork to run for governor.
“I am a declared Democratic candidate. I have every right to be here. I filed my paperwork a year ago,” Whitnum said.
One by one, the other candidates got up from their seats and left the stage, and then a Brookfield police officer approached the angry woman who remained at the table.
The video showed that the officer bent over and spoke into the outraged candidate’s ear in what appeared to be an effort to get her to leave the stage without further drama. But that didn’t work.
“I will not be Wasserman-Schultzed by you, ma’am. I will not be Wasserman-Schultzed. Now you sit down, and let me do my job,” Whitnum screamed at the chair of the Brookfield County Democratic Party as two officers tried to unseat her from the table.
At first, Whitnum leaned across the table and hung onto it, but police were able to peel her off of it, the video showed.
Officers stood her up as she continued to rant, but then the candidate made a quick turn and dropped onto the floor, where she lay on her back and refused to move, the video showed.
The video showed officers tried to pick her up and carry her, but she was uncooperative, so a third officer assisted them in literally dragging her off the stage.
Then officers removed the gubernatorial candidate from the high school in handcuffs, and arrested her on charges of second-degree breach of peace and simple trespass, the Hartford Courant reported.
The local Democrats appeared to want nothing to do with the candidate who claimed to be a member of their group.
“We’re a big tent party, we invite people from all walks of life to participate in our Party and the electoral process,” Connecticut Democratic State Party Chairman Nick Balletto told the Hartford Courant.
“But based on Lee Whitnum’s behavior tonight, and based on her behavior in the past, it’s clear that Lee Whitnum should not hold elected office and does not represent the Democratic Party, nor should she participate in Party functions on a local or statewide level,” Balletto said.
Whitnum told WTIC that the state party chair was referring to comments she’d made about U.S. Senator Chris Murphy (D – Connecticut) when he was running for office in 2012.
On that occasion, Whitnum called then-U.S. Representative Murphy a “whore” who “sells his soul” during a televised debate.
Whitnum, whose legal name is Lisa Baker, was booked, photographed, and released on a $500 bond, WTIC reported.
Watch police literally drag a candidate for governor off a debate stage in the video below: