Student denied entry to Michelle Obama event for wearing McCain t-shirt
According to Campus Reform.org, a conservative student was denied entry into a rally featuring First Lady Michelle Obama at the University of Florida on Wednesday because he was wearing a t-shirt in support of Republican John McCain’s (R-Ariz.) 2007 campaign for the White House.
The student, Matt Pesek, was pulled out of line for the event and told the event was only for supporters. “I was waiting in line wearing a ‘Gators for McCain’ shirt when a guy [representing the Obama campaign] comes up to me to just intimidate me,” Pesek told Campus Reform. “[He then] asks me for my ticket saying… this is an event with only Obama supporters.”
When Pesek objected, saying he would turn his shirt inside out, was not there to cause trouble, and would even applaud for her, he was still denied entry.
At this point, the Dean of Students, Jen Day Shaw, approached Pesek and reportedly told him that the Obama officials “can refuse entry to whomever they want” because it was a “private event.”
A university spokesman seemed to corroborate part of Pesek’s story on Tuesday confirming the Obama campaign was given complete control of the event and the crowd.
“The event was a ticketed, non-university function run by the Obama campaign,” University spokeswoman Janine Sikes added in a brief statement to Campus Reform.Sikes stressed that “any UF officials attending the event attended on their own time” and denied that university officials or resources had been deployed towards the event.
Pesek disputed the claims that this was a “private event” noting, “They [the university] certainly advertised it to students… I didn’t hear about the rally from the Obama campaign. I heard about it from people at the university.”
The student government sent out an email to the students directing them to Organizing for America sites to pick up tickets. Further, the emails noted the following:
“The event is free and open to the public, but tickets are required for entrance. To pick up your ticket, you can visit one of the following locations beginning Friday, September 14th, at 10 AM.”
According to Campus Reform, despite multiple calls and e-mails requesting comment, they received no response from the Obama camaign.
Perhaps the campaign believes Campus Reform and Matt Pesek are part of that 53% that they can ignore. But doesn’t Barack Obama believe he is the president of those who supported John McCain as well?
Being President of the United States of America means you're President for everybody. http://t.co/CCGbyEca—
Barack Obama (@BarackObama) September 19, 2012
Except when they attend your wife’s events promoting you.
HT ERJohnson for Campus Reform story