Conservative investigative journalist Jason Mattera managed to briefly engage New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg, an outspoken gun control advocate, about the arms debate.
"In the spirit of gun control, will you disarm your entire security team?" Mattera asked the long-time gun control proponent who in 2006 co-launched the initiative Mayors Against Illegal Guns (MAIG).
Bloomberg laughed off Matera's suggestion, and responded, "Um, you, we'll get right back to you."
The exchange, which occurred on Jan. 18 at the U.S. Conference of Mayors in Washington D.C., was captured on video and released on Tuesday on Brietbart.com
The video shows a dismissive Bloomberg, surrounded by at least half a dozen armed security personnel, making his way into a chauffeured car. An insistent Mattera addresses Bloomberg as guards surround him. At one point, two security guards grabbed the 29-year-old reporter by the arms and pulled him away while a third blocked him with his body.
At the time of the confrontation, Mattera was holding a large soda, in reference to Bloomberg's successful ban of the sale of sugary drinks in cups or containers larger than 16 ounces in NYC, which is set to take effect March 12.
As security guards pulled him away, Mattera asked Bloomberg, "Would you like a sip of my soda?"
Mattera then attempted to get through a barricade of brawny security guards, which included undercover NYC police officers, asking the mayor, who was at this point in his black SUV: "Mayor Bloomberg, why can you defend yourself but not the majority of Americans? I mean look at the team of security you got. And you're an advocate for gun control?"
Mattera then walked away from Bloomberg and was approached further down the block by a NYC police officer who identified himself as "Officer Stockton" and asked to see his identification. After presenting the officer with his press credentials, Mattera asked the officer, "I asked a question. What did I violate?" The officer replied that he didn't violate anything and that he was only requesting to see his identification.
The officer appeared to try to intimidate the journalist, asking Mattera for his Maryland driver's license and following him down the block.
The apparent intimidation was reminiscent of an incident involving a reporter and Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel
, another fierce proponent of gun control. During President Barack Obama's re-election campaign in November, two large security guards grabbed BuzzFeed Political Reporter Michael Hastings, during an exchange about the president.
Mattera's request that Bloomberg disarm his security force mirrors a current White House petition on the "We the People" website calling for the elimination of "armed guards for the president, vice president, and their families, and establish Gun Free Zones around them."
Requiring 25,000 signatures to receive an official response from the administration, the petition has until 10 a.m. on Tuesday received 31,846 signatures.
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