The Stomp Speech and the Flip Flopper: Gingrich’s Staff Accused Of Assaulting Paul Supporter

Newt Gingrich has made it known that he will not tolerate flip floppers like Mitt Romney. His staff, however, took that to a new extreme by allegedly assaulting Ron Paul supporter Eddie Dillard who appeared at a Gingrich event with an opposing campaign sign. According to witnesses, Gingrich staff yelled for “everyone to step on his toes.” Dillard was wearing flip flops and was injured after he said a security member used his heels to grind into Dillard’s foot. The case could present an interesting tort lawsuit and a question of respondeat superior where an employer is liable for the torts of his employees if they are acting in the scope of their employment.

In this case, reports state that at least one Gingrich supporter encouraged staff and supporters to block Dillard and assault him. The report below states that “Gingrich aides and security personnel swarmed Dillard” and began to stomp him, including an aide who screamed “Just block him!. Everyone step on his toes!”

The description raises a straightforward case of assault and battery. The question is whether such tortious conduct would extend to the campaign and Gingrich. In addition to a claim of vicarious liability through respondeat superior, there is also the possible claim or negligent hiring or training. Island City Flying Serv. v. Gen. Elec. Credit Corp., 585 So.2d 274, 276 (Fla. 1991). Like other states, an employer in Florida is liable “if the wrongful act is done while the employee is acting within the apparent scope of his authority as such employee to serve the interests of the employer, . . . unless the wrongful act of the employee was done to accomplish his own purposes, and not to serve the interests of the employer.” Gowan v. Bay County, 744 So.2d 1136, 1138 (Fla. 1st DCA 1999), Stinson v. Prevatt, 84 Fla. 416, 94 So. 656, 657 (1922)/

Often intentional torts or crimes are ruled as falling outside of the scope of employment. However, there are exceptions, particularly when security staff are involved.

Assuming that these were campaign aides or staff, the question would become whether they were engaged in a “frolic or detour.” This act, if proven, was committed as part of a campaign event to facilitate the campaign activity. This would appear to fit the model of a respondeat superior case. That could add a new dimension to Gingrich’s promises for “tort reform.”

Source: Yahoo

38 thoughts on “The Stomp Speech and the Flip Flopper: Gingrich’s Staff Accused Of Assaulting Paul Supporter”

  1. I agree, carol. It looks like a very close election between Obama and Romney. I am not in a swing state so it probably does not matter. Pennsylvania looks like it will be close and a must win for Obama.

  2. Well said carol. When you try to protest by not voting, you are in fact setting up a more positive result for the Republican.

  3. Treemonkey The problem with not voting is it is a default vote for the other guy. If you want, for instance the social policies of the repubs – forget the other ideologies to which they subscribe, and you are (more) for Obama then not voting for him is a defacto vote for the repub nominee.

  4. Our hideous corrupt government. Isn’t this something all those prepper’s are preparing for? The end of unbridled greed and lawless politicians, held unaccountable by a completely bought-out press. They actually wish for national bankruptcy. I think it will happen too, I mean every time they anounce an up-tick in the economy – here comes big oil right back to 100 dollars a barrel or more. I do not wish to bridle this greed.

    There is absolutley nobody for vote for, tnone running now that represents the American people, thus no reason to vote. I’m tired of mobster for president.

  5. This should be pursued. Does Ron Paul have standing in this, as it was his organization, possibly corporation, that was injured? Most amusing, interesting, and instructive.

  6. I wonder what Prof Turley has to say about this since he has met Paul many times and thinks highly of him.

  7. Blouise, Anonymous says they were hacking neo-nazi sites and just happened to uncover Paul’s ties.

  8. SwM,

    That ibtimes link is most informative. wonder how all the Ron Paul supporters will explain it away.

  9. I was invited to a McCain rally when he was pres candidate. (by mistake, I had emailed them about someting McCain said and how wrong he was, somehow they must have kept my name in the database anyway.)
    The behavior of the people around me was awful. I have a facial pain disability (I cannot tolerate touch to the left side of my face – from trigeminal neuralgia.) The disabled area was behind everyone standing so I stood and asked if I could get up to the front where the barrier was, so no touch plus something to help me with a slight balance problem. I was told “No!” “No way!.”, pushed and banged around, people actively and purposefully shoving into me to try and knock me over.
    When I was leaving a reporter stopped me and asked what I thought about what McCain said and why was I a supporter. I told her that I was invited, probably by mistake, but I am a democrat and disagreed with McCain. A woman followed me all the way to my car, screaming at me, “You’re a liar, you said you were a republican” (which I never did, her assumption because I was at rally. She was so rabid and threatening that I had to call security about her.)
    I was also at 2 Obama rallies. Surprise, “Could I get up to the front where I can lean on barricade because of a balance problem?” “Sure.” “Absolutely.” “No Problem.” “Are you okay?”
    I don’t want to paint one side with the black brush but this story about Newt’s guys just helps solidify my viiews that too many repubs are fascists fools who care nothing about the rights of others.

  10. The guy had just lost his job and does not have health insurance. The answers that the four RepubliCons gave at their debate to the question from the lady in the audience who had an illness, had lost her job and had no health insurance and what was she to do— were lame. As lame as this guy is going to be after getting stomped by righteous RepubliCons.
    The Prussian is coming out in Newt’s pack.

    Hint to Willard’s crew– wave flip flops at Newt at his next appearance.

  11. Speaking of delusions of grandeur, Newt not only has his own SA now, but he also thinks Brad Pitt should play him in the movie version of his life.

    Quick, Newt! Take some of that $10,000,000 in Adleson cash and go to the store! See if you can buy a mirror and a clue.

  12. Hey! Newt got his very own set of brown shirts with the $10,000,000 that Sheldon Adelson and his wife gave him. Way to go, Newtster!

    I was just wondering how much it cost to buy your own Sturmabteilung.

  13. Newt is going to offer this guy free pain medicine and then when he’s really doped up, he’ll get him to sign the release from liability form!

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