Florida Congresswoman and Democratic National Committee Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz was booed off stage at a breakfast rally for the Florida delegation on Monday morning by protesters who waved signs saying “E-MAILS” and “Bernie Sanders.”
The boos started immediately at the beginning of Wasserman Schultz’s speech and continued throughout; they were mixed with cheers. One man expressed his support by standing up near the congresswoman and putting both his thumbs up, but that was not enough to silence the loud boos in the background.
The kerfuffle follows reports that the congresswoman will step down as DNC chair at the end of the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, this week, following a WikiLeaks release of thousands of internal Democratic Party emails showing Wasserman Shultz’s efforts to hamstring Bernie Sanders’ presidential campaign, among other big reveals.
As The Hill‘s Ben Kamisar reported, the “E-MAILS” signs were joined by signs reading “No!” and “Thanks for the ‘help,’ Debbie.”
Even when the Florida lawmaker mentioned Sunday night’s shooting in Fort Meyers, Florida, which left two dead and more than a dozen injured, the heckling did not stop. Nevertheless, Wasserman Shultz soldiered on.
“We know the voices in this room that are standing up and being disruptive, that’s not the Florida we know,” she declared. “The Florida we know is united, the Florida we know will continue to create jobs.”
What a united Florida and creating jobs has to do with the WikiLeaks reveals or the anger of Sanders’ supporters, she did not say.
Protesters yelled, “Shame! Shame!” as supporters clapped and cheered, but the boos really stood out, as did the heckling signs.
Ever faithful to their audience, MSNBC reported “cheers” for Schultz, neglecting the loud boos and protest signs in the audience. Seriously, check it out:
— The Mental Recession (@rustyweiss74) July 25, 2016
With events like this, the 2016 Democratic National Convention promises to be just as chaotic as the Republican National Convention was last week in Cleveland, Ohio — if not even more so. Protesters were already arrested last week, and further plans for protest events like a “fart-in” are in the works.
Nevertheless, Wasserman Schultz has become one of the most controversial figures at the convention. On Monday, former Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell told The Hill that if it were up to him, she would not even address the convention. Many sign-bearing hecklers seem to agree with that conclusion.
See the video on the next page!