Lawmaker apologizes for yanking mic from opponent

Published 10:02 pm Thursday, October 11, 2018

ROCHESTER — A Minnesota state lawmaker is apologizing after he yanked a microphone from the hand of his Democratic challenger during a forum that was livestreamed over the internet.

Jamie Mahlberg appeared startled when Rep. Duane Quam grabbed the microphone from her on Monday night. Quam then rebutted a point Mahlberg had made about education funding.

When Quam then offered the microphone back, Mahlberg did not take it. Quam then dropped it in front of her.

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Video of the incident circulated widely on social media, with some calling Quam’s behavior “boorish” or “bullying.”

Quam apologized in a Facebook message and said he respects Mahlberg. He said his nerves got the best of him as his responses were timed and he wasn’t as graceful as he should have been.