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After Advocating For Cutting Servers’ Wages, MN GOP Gubernatorial Candidate Gets Pennies Dumped On Him

By Zaid Jilani on July 15, 2010 at 3:15 pm

"After Advocating For Cutting Servers’ Wages, MN GOP Gubernatorial Candidate Gets Pennies Dumped On Him"

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As ThinkProgress previously reported, the Republican candidate for Minnesota’s gubenatorial race, Tom Emmer, recently advocated for reducing the minimum wage of service workers in his state, ludicrously citing $100,000 compensation that few Minnesota service workers get.

Yesterday, Emmer held a town hall with servers at a Mexican restaurant in Roseville, Minnesota, to try to contain the political backlash from his earlier comments. Yet the gubernatorial candidate had to cut the meeting short as political activist Nick Espinosa of Minneapolis dropped a bag of thousands of pennies in front of Emmer while yelling, “I have a tip for you too, Emmer!“:

A trial lawyer by trade, GOP gubernatorial candidate Tom Emmer encountered one tough jury Wednesday: a packed room of servers who feared that he wants to cut their wages.

An hour later, he walked out after a bag of 2,000 pennies was dumped inches from his face by a man exclaiming, “I have a tip for you too, Emmer!” as cascading pennies bounced in every direction and the crowd at a Roseville restaurant erupted into chaos. [...]

Then the pennies flew. They were dropped in front of Emmer by Nick Espinosa of Minneapolis, who sometimes goes by the name Robert Erickson. [...] A stunned Emmer looked flustered as Espinosa, who has disrupted at least one other conservative event, rushed out a side entrance.

Espinosa shouted at the meeting that he did it “partly because of Emmer’s support of Arizona’s controversial immigration bill.” The gubernatorial candidate “tried to yell out his closing statement, but it was mostly lost as people shouted and clapped.” A photographer for the Star Tribune snapped a picture right as Espinosa dropped the bag on the table before Emmer:

emmer4

This isn’t Espinosa’s first time in the national spotlight. Last year — again using the name Robert Erickson — he managed to get a speaking spot at an anti-immigration rally and satirically began railing against European immigration.

Update

Espinosa extended an invitation to Emmer to discuss immigration with him at a public forum, but the gubernatorial candidate turned it down.

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