January 20, 2008

Doug Bruce Draws Censure Recommendation, Criticizes Denver Media As Too "Aggressive"

Boo hoo:
Rep. Douglas Bruce (R-Colorado Springs) tells YOUR SHOW he does not believe he should be censured for an altercation between him and a Rocky Mountain News photographer last Monday.

A committee of his House colleagues is recommending the new state representative face a penalty never before issued in the legislature's 131-year history as well as requiring him to apologize to his peers for violating the decorum of the House of Representatives.

The committee made its recommendation on Friday afternoon after hearing from the photographer involved and Bruce. The photographer, Javier Manzano, said he was kicked by the representative during the House's morning prayer while Bruce described it as a "tap" with the bottom of his shoe that came after two previous requests not to take his picture. The longtime anti-tax advocate does not believe he did anything wrong.

"I don't think (the photographers) should have disrupted the public proceeding with their noise and their flashing and taking pictures of somebody praying who politely twice asked them not to do so," Bruce said in response to a viewer's question on the program. "I tapped him with the bottom of my shoe because he was seated in front of me. I didn't haul off and kick anybody. It never happened. I tapped him with the bottom of my shoe to say, 'Look, I asked you twice, the prayer is ongoing, please stop.' I don't consider that to be an assault, an act of violence, a crime.

"Apparently around here, they're setting up a rule that you can never touch anybody, so OK, I won't touch anybody."

Bruce told viewers the media in Denver are "much more aggressive and much less courteous" than the media he's used to dealing with in Colorado Springs. He called them "paparazzi" and said he'd only received three messages from his district in Colorado Springs about the event. Two were supportive of him and he said one was not.
Did Bruce forget that in most circumstances outside of consenting touch or self-defense, touching/hitting/kicking etc. is generally considered to be inappropriate, if not a prosecutable offense--especially in this day and age?

You can watch Bruce answer some questions from Adam Schrager on YourShow.

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