Bill O’Reilly Bans the Press From His Values Voter Speech
When reporters walked up to the ballroom of the Omni Shoreham Hotel to see Bill O’Reilly’s Friday night speech — he was receiving the “Media Courage Award” — we were told, to our surprise, that no members of the media would be allowed in. Word had leaked out that no non-Fox News cameras would be allowed in, but there had been no indication that no reporters could attend even if they left their recording equipment and notebooks outside.
I was one of about a dozen reporters who huddled outside the room for a few minutes immediately after the speech was supposed to start. Security guards, pictured after the jump, ushered us further and further away from the door–we could hear brief bits of O’Reilly’s speech when the doors would swing open. At around 7:10, we heard a loud clatter and the doors blasted open, as Mike Stark, a Huffington Post liberal blogger [UPDATE: An earlier version of this post incorrectly stated that Stark, formerly employed by FireDogLake, still worked for that site], was hauled out by multiple security guards.
“I have a right to be here!” shouted Stark, as he was forced into the stairwell leading outside the hotel. Speaking the next morning, emcee Gil Mertz mocked Stark (not by name) as a “representative from don’tjudgemeasIjudgeyou.org.”
The blocked ballroom door.
The belated warning to the press, which was posted in the press room during the speech.