Reporter Says Guards Manhandled Him After He Tried to Ask Questions At FCC Meeting

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John M. Donnelly, a reporter for CQ Roll Call, said that he was shoved against a wall by two security guards after he tried to ask questions to an FCC commissioner following the open commission meeting on Thursday.

“When Donnelly strolled in an unthreatening way toward FCC commissioner Michael O’Rielly to pose a question, two guards pinned Donnelly against the wall with the backs of their bodies until O’Rielly had passed,” according to a release sent out by the the National Press Club.

“One of the guards, Frederick Bucher, asked Donnelly why he had not posed his question during the press conference. Then Bucher proceeded to force Donnelly to leave the building entirely under implied threat of force.”

“I could not have been less threatening or more polite,” Donnelly said in a statement. “There is no justification for using force in such a situation.”

Neil Grace, an FCC spokesman, said, “We apologized to Mr. Donnelly more than once and let him know that the FCC was on heightened alert today based on several threats.”

At the meeting, the FCC took the initial steps toward rolling back a key provision of the net neutrality rules, an issue that has in the past triggered demonstrations outside the agency’s headquarters. A number of public interest groups staged another one before the meeting on Thursday.

After the meeting, the FCC chairman and, on occasion, other commissioners hold press conferences with reporters.

According to Donnelly, the security guards were plainclothes security personnel who “shadowed” him “as if he were a security threat.” He said that he was displaying his congressional press pass and held a tape recorder and notepad. He said that they even waited outside the men’s room at one point.

The National Press Club said that another reporter, Todd Shields of Bloomberg, told Donnelly that Bucher had taken his press pass when he was talking to a protester at an FCC meeting in July. The agency apologized and restored his credentials.

O’Rielly tweeted a response to Donnelly on Thursday evening, apologizing for the incident and offering to answer any of his questions.

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  1. jeffgossett says:

    Are the commenters here Americans? I can’t believe American would wish harm to a reporter for asking questions. What part of Russia do you all live?

  2. Bruce says:

    Good for them. Should have jailed him for a few hours to determine if he was a threat.

  3. Jack Fanning says:

    cuff him and perp walk him to jail. Make his lefty rag post bail. So-called journalists are not exempt from living by the same rules as the rest of us.

  4. Mark Smith says:

    Don’t come here for sympathy. I’d have smacked you myself.

  5. Often respect gets respect and disrespect gets disrespect. I suppose this yellow journalist never learned that or thinks it doesn’t apply to him.

  6. Tom says:

    Ahhhh…poor, poor reporter was roughed up a bit. You guys in the so called “media” deserve a little smacking around every once in a while after you fill your note pads full of lies and deceit. ant someone to kiss your boo boo?

  7. Liberalism is the same as terrorism now. Both use lying, cheating, stealing, name-calling, threats, intimidation, riots, destruction of property, threats of violence and publicly urging the killing of those with opposing views in their effort to advance their agenda. This is why the guards were so aggressive. Can anyone explain how Liberals are NOT like terrorists?

  8. Fred says:

    With all of these leftist groups resorting to violence (see Berkeley demonstrations, etc.), it’s no wonder that govt security personnel are gonna be prepared and err on the side of caution vs do nothing to protect officials. Even though this reporter might have had the best intentions, or couldn’t have been “more polite”, security doesn’t know his intentions . Better safe than sorry

    • Mary says:

      He was not doing anything to pose a threat. He had his Press Credentials, his notepad and pen, he was not looking like a threat in any way, and was obviously a reporter. To pin him up against a wall for simply asking a question is absolutely unacceptable. There is no Democracy without a free press.

  9. Hmm, let’s parse this out.
    Protesters in support of “Net Neutrality” openly ask to ban websites. Now that doesn’t sound like “free” and “open” to me.
    Now get this: Protesters are NOT talking about banning moslem terror sites, or Soros Globalist propaganda sites, or hardcore porn sites, but popular news sites like “Drudge Report,” and “Free Republic.”
    Most of these protesters are on the payroll of one of 35 or so “activist” groups that are funded by George Soros–through donations to crooked non-profits led by the Clintons and Obammy.
    So who’s the enemy of free speech?

  10. Henri says:

    Wait just a moment. You cannot use this gender assumptive headline!! I am distraught now and may not be able to function at work! I will send you the bill from therapy and my attorney will be contacting you!

  11. Steve says:

    Ahh, did they make him cry???

  12. Nunya Business says:

    He got off too easy. Go hang with the douchebags out front protesting fascism even though they can’t explain to you what fascism is.

    • Mary says:

      Why would he not be let off easy? What are you even talking about? He was not doing anything to pose a threat. He was DOING HIS JOB! He is a reporter.

  13. Xerxes1965 says:

    What threats was the FCC under? Why not explain them to the public or is it that only the FCC members lives matter and not the public’s? Since the Patriot Act I have seen the USG become too much like Nazi Germany.

  14. Chuck says:

    He wants more government. He got more government!

  15. Rob Conway says:

    The media has become politicized, so they get no sympathy from me, not even the time of day.

  16. Kaboom! says:

    Boo hoo hoo…the snowflake wants our pity…the newsmedia of hate deserve to be “manhandled”.

  17. If ole John expected sympathy, not from me. I love it.The ‘media’ has exposed themselves to be what a lot of us have known for years. Entitled, privileged, arrogant, smug – heck I’ll even thrown in Hillary’s favorite word, deplorable people. Mind your manners next time, John. You’re no better than anyone else in the world. I’m sorry you got an apology.

    • Mary says:

      He was minding his manners. Tell me what he was doing wrong. Please, tell me.

      • Kevin Enkell says:

        I’ll tell you. Chasing people up and down hallways and getting in their faces is not journalism, It’s harassment. When it’s done with the agenda of personal destruction it’s unethical. He had an opportunity to ask any question he liked during the press conference, a SPECIAL privilege accorded to he and his ilk. He was out of order.

  18. Mark Edman says:

    Good! This will likely continue, propagate and expand now that the press has outted themselves as engaged in an attempted coup d’etat of the Trump Administration. Sounds like he got what he had coming to him. The press is an existential enemy of the US.

  19. kryptowizard says:

    Although I do believe the professional journalist knew and could have taken steps to follow the standard guidelines and would probably not have been hurt if he did, I doubt very much that the FCC commissioner did not see this act. The U.S. doesn’t need more bullies and people in charge taking advantage of their position, they need people who are doing their job and representing the people they claim are supposed to be represented, and it’s NOT THE WEALTHY LOBBYIST…

    • Osama Bedead says:

      So it would have been OK with you if this “journalist” had pulled out a gun and started shooting? The idiot “journalist didn’t think the rules applied to him because he was special. He advanced toward a government official just like the liberal demonstrators who often threaten to (and sometimes do) kill those who disagree with them. The security guards had seconds to decide if this was just a jerk who thought he was above the rules or a real threat. They made a snap decision to take the simple act of pinning him to a wall so that he couldn’t harm anyone and they didn’t harm him in the process. The “journalist” is very lucky he’s not sitting in jail for threatening a public official. A press pass doesn’t mean you can do anything you want. BTW, notice we only get the “journalist’s” side of the story? I’m sure if we asked the guards we would get an entirely different version of what the jerk was doing.

  20. ron says:

    That’s because he IS a security threat…

  21. OldOllie says:

    The FCC commissioners have been receiving death threats ever since they announced their intent to reverse the government’s attempt to seize control over Internet content under the guise of “net neutrality.” Donnelly had an opportunity to ask his question during the regular question-and-answer period, but this special little snowflake thought that was beneath him. He violated security protocol, and he was rightly treated as a threat. He’s lucky he didn’t get Tazed and handcuffed.

  22. CTLovesNathanHale says:

    Funny how their (phony) apologies include lame excuses, I smell the telltale pattern of organized sociopaths here. Any ordinary criminal wouldn’t be given a pass by the sentencing judge by claiming their battery was due to a heightened alert, or empty stomach.

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