The Ron Paul campaign is demanding that Newt Gingrich pay the medical bills for Eddie Dillard, a Paul supporter whose foot was broken Tuesday after Gingrich staffers intentionally stomped on it.
Campaigning at a Florida polling place Tuesday, Gingrich was greeted by Dillard, who held his Paul sign as Gingrich supporters rallied around their candidate.
Gingrich staffers were not pleased with this and, according to a report by Yahoo! News’ Chris Moody, encouraged one another to physically impede the flip-flop wearing Dillard.
One Gingrich security staffer stood in front of Dillard and, according to Moody, “lifted his heeled shoe over Dillard’s bare foot and dug the back of it into his skin, twisting it side-to-side like he was stomping out a cigarette.”
“Just block him!” said another Gingrich campaign aide. “Everyone step on his toes!”
Following the event, Dillard realized that a bruise was forming on his foot.
In a statement released after the incident Tuesday, Jesse Benton, national campaign chairman for the Paul campaign, demanded a swift response from Gingrich.
“They say the culture of an organization is a reflection of its top executive and today’s deplorable behavior against Ron Paul supporter Eddie Dillard in Florida reflects very poorly on Congressman Gingrich,” said Benton.
“I call on Congressman Gingrich to publicly apologize to Mr. Dillard,” Benton said. “In addition, we ask that those Gingrich campaign staff directly involved in the episode be immediately terminated”
“There is simply no excuse for the type of violent, boorish and abusive behavior demonstrated by Mr. Gingrich’s campaign,” Benton continued. “We hope Mr. Gingrich understands this.”
Come Wednesday afternoon, the Paul campaign had not received a satisfactory response, and so released another statement, adding to its list of demands.
“Newt’s campaign staff broke Eddie Dillard’s foot, yet we still have not heard from Gingrich about how he plans to right the situation,” said Benton. “Today, we are calling on Newt Gingrich to pay for Eddie’s medical bills.”