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Watch: A Political Tracker's Phone Seized by DeLong

Race for the 47th congressional district heats up as California Democratic Party releases YouTube from its tracker, labeled a "stalker" by DeLong, who confronts her while someone calls her 'ugly.'

This is the video posted midday Monday by the California Democratic Party, which labeled it "Gary DeLong Loses It."

Long Beach City Councilman DeLong, a Republican, had already in weekend email press alerts labeled her a stalker hired by his opponent, State Senator Alan Lowenthal's political party.

The rule of the forum by the League of Women Voters was that there be no videotaping--except news media--during the forum. It was not clear there was such a rule about doing so afterward in Cal State Long Beach's Pyramid meeting room. It is a public university. 

Both national parties have closely watched this campaign for a new congressional seat in the U.S. House of Representatives as Democrats and Republicans seek the majority. This turn of events is the most heated in an increasingly charged election campaign. The seat represents most of Long Beach and several Orange County cities including Rossmoor and Los Alamitos.

We have asked DeLong for comment on the video, and Patch will follow up with more on this story.

From his Monday media e-mail from campaign media director Noel Fritsch:

“I asked her nicely several times to get the camera out of my face,” DeLong said. "When she refused to remove the camera from my face, I removed the camera and delivered it to a representative of the League of Women Voters so they could take appropriate action.  I play by the rules and believe Alan Lowenthal should as well.  Just because he lost the debate doesn't mean he shouldn't act in a more ethical manner."      

“Several people audibly and politely asked the woman to stop being so intrusive with her camera, but she wouldn’t listen. She kept shoving her camera in Gary’s face," stated Dorothy Kistler. "It made me feel very uncomfortable.” 
            
“I was having a conversation with Gary after the debate when the stalker interrupted our conversation by holding her camera just inches away from Gary's face.  I’ve never seen anything like it,” said Bill Thomas, a resident of Long Beach who attended the Forum. “I felt intimidated by her crazy behavior and was concerned about what her next action might be. She even pushed me in her effort to get closer to DeLong.”

The scuffle post-forum was the most charged in a campaign that has seen most fur fly by e-mail sorties. 

  On Monday, DeLong is quoted by the Press Telegram's Eric Bradley saying he did not regret grabbing the tracker's phone camera, adding:

"It was intrusive," said DeLong. "Most importantly, I don't think voters in the 47th District support that behavior."

On Monday, Lowenthal's campaign consultant, Mike Shimpock, scoffed at the stalking label for standard political M.O. and questioned DeLong's vow to vote contrary to conservative Republican leaders.

"How does anyone believe Gary is going to be able to face down Iran as a member of Congress when he's afraid of a 95-pound blonde with a video camera?"

Late Monday, the Press Telegram, which has endorsed DeLong for congress, posted an editorial declaring he had lost his cool:

"DeLong insists he 'didn't feel anger or overreaction.' But the reality is that he did overreact. Ripping someone's property from their hands is not acceptable behavior from anyone, especially a candidate for Congress."

Watts October 13, 2012 at 09:23 PM
People get your camera phones charged for tomorrow! Gary and his hit mob will be spending a few hours in Alamitos Park on Sunday! https://www.facebook.com/events/118361621649330/ I'll be the guy shooting video of Bill Christiansen ;-)
Mike Ruehle October 14, 2012 at 01:51 AM
Downloaded them and counted them myself. There's another 18 in Naples. You should consider actually looking into it yourself rather than believing anything the ABC says. Or is this another instance like the 37% reduced spending by ACTA you proclaimed only to find out you didn't know what you were talking about.
Mike Ruehle October 14, 2012 at 01:54 AM
Then why is DeLong and his Communications Director lying about it if they aren't doing anything wrong?
John B. Greet October 14, 2012 at 02:31 AM
"Downloaded them and counted them myself...You should consider actually looking into it yourself rather than believing anything the ABC says." Downloaded them from where, Ruehle, exactly? The ABC website that you infer doesn't know how many such licenses there are? If you downloaed and counted them, as you claim, then name them. Make sure that every one you name is, in fact, in Belmont Shore. I look forward to reading your list. Remember..."68 businesses in Belmont Shore that have alcohol licenses." I'll be waiting. "There's another 18 in Naples." Is it really possible that you once served as BSRA President but didn't know that Naples is not considered part of Belmont Shore? "Or is this another instance like the 37% reduced spending by ACTA you proclaimed only to find out you didn't know what you were talking about." I cited my source for the ACTA figure, Ruehle. I even gave you the page number of ACTA's own report from which I pulled it. How about citing *your* source for your claim of "68 businesses in Belmont Shore that have alcohol licenses." Still waiting.
Mike Ruehle October 14, 2012 at 08:13 AM
Again, why are DeLong and his Communications Director lying about it if they aren't doing anything wrong?
Mike Ruehle October 14, 2012 at 08:19 AM
ABC's website provides all the information you need. So download them yourself. I won't expend such effort for someone so insulting.
Mike Ruehle October 14, 2012 at 08:23 AM
In understand retractable phone leashes (like retractable dog leashes) will be provided by the Democratic Party to thwart DeLong's attempt to erase all public videos of himself.
John B. Greet October 14, 2012 at 03:26 PM
So which is it, Ruehle, is ABC's data credible on this topic or is it not? Patch posted ABC's data on the article I linked. The ABC report says there are 43 liquor lincenses in the two census tracts that include Belmont Shore. So how do you explain your apparently inflated number (of 68) that you claim *also* came from ABC? Were you including the Naples licences? If so, then your comment was false, because Naples is not part of Belmont Shore. Were you simply hoping no one would notice? Well, someone did. Could it be that, as you so often accuse *others* who sometimes get their facts wrong, you were simply lying? If so, why? Aren't 43 licenses in such a small area bad enough, without untruthfully inflating that number just to make your point? Did you simply make a mistake? Fine. Admit it and move on. How do you explain two different numbers that you claim came from the very same source? And why are you relying on ABC at all if, as you also told me: "You should consider actually looking into it yourself rather than believing anything the ABC says." Didn't you also rely on "what ABC says"? Or were you lying about that too? Can you even keep all your lies straight anymore? Do you wonder why fewer and fewer people seem to believe much of what you have to say anymore? If there's a reasonable explanation for the difference in our numbers I would very much like to hear what you think that might be.
John B. Greet October 14, 2012 at 03:31 PM
If only there were retractable Ruehle leashes....
Watts October 14, 2012 at 05:49 PM
Yes, this big scary stalker. I can tell from these photos just how intimidating she must have been ;-) http://kelseyhewlet1.wix.com/kelsey-hewlett#!gallery
John B. Greet October 14, 2012 at 06:09 PM
BTW, Ruehle, I never once proclaimed that ACTA reduced spending by 37%. What I actually said was: "In fact the (ACTA) Board has cut expenses by 36.7% over the past year." (10/5/12, 6:49pm) http://belmontshore.patch.com/articles/congressional-candidate-donated-to-opponent-in-08-09#comments_list Once again you blatantly and deliberately misrepresent what a person actually says -even when their actual quote is readily available to you- just so as to attempt to prove your own point and offer a back-handed insult. Your repeated and utterly fraudulent rhetorical tactics are as obvious as they are pathetic.
Watts October 14, 2012 at 06:11 PM
I just picked up the Signal Tribune and this story is front page, above the fold. Here is a link to that article: http://www.signaltribunenewspaper.com/?p=16869 What I found interesting was the photo that gave both perspective on her physical size to DeLong, but more interesting is how I think that we can get a better idea of just how "in his face" she actually was. Seeing this, even if it isn't the exact moment that DeLong grabbed the phone from her, it probably reminds all of us what it is like to create a decent visual composition on our own phones. From what we can see in this photo, she has to be a pretty significant distance away to keep both speakers in frame. But let's say that she really did want to just have Delong, she could probably cut the distance in half. But lets go further for the least likely scenario, which is that she wanted a close up of his face. First of all, the camera probably has the ability to zoom, but lets even say that it didn't, at some point she would become too close for a decent image at all. So I tested my camera phone with my girlfriend. I kept the phone zoomed out all the way, as to require me to get as close as possible to have her head fill the frame. Even at that, the closest that I could get to her face, without her head from going out of frame, was about 2 and a half feet. So that would seem to be the absolute worst case (and least likely) scenario of "in his face." If videotaping, she was most likely further away than that.
Watts October 15, 2012 at 04:08 PM
One other thing about that article is that it points out that the original event brought out 300 people, but the video currently has almost 2500 views. The video is easily on a path to be seen by more than 10 times as many people as the event.
Watts October 18, 2012 at 07:43 PM
Did anybody partake in the DeLong open conference call yesterday? I was wondering if this incident came up on the open call.
Watts October 31, 2012 at 02:59 AM
I just received an email from the Delong campaign and it came from somebody named Noel Fritsch, where previous emails had been coming from Bill Christiansen. Bill, for those who need to be reminded, is the more gratuitously nasty star of the Delong cell phone grabbing video. Does anybody know of Delong finally fired Christiansen or are they now just trying to keep his name off of correspondences with the public?
Nancy Wride (Editor) October 31, 2012 at 03:39 AM
I would doubt it. Bill is a seasoned party and campaign person. Noel is DeLong's communications director. I received the same e-mail on my person account and Patch.
Mike Ruehle October 31, 2012 at 05:41 AM
Noel is the liar working for DeLong who told the Patch there was no city staff in the phone grabbing video.
John B. Greet October 31, 2012 at 03:40 PM
Ah, there you are, Ruehle. Have you found those "68 businesses in Belmont Shore that have alcohol licenses." yet? No? I didn't really think so. You seem to be accusing Mr. Fritsch of lying on the basis that he had told Nancy that no City staff were visible in the video in question, even though you claim 3rd Council District Chief of Staff Anne Cramer *can* be clearly seen. If Ms. Cramer was present at the event (and seen in the video) is it possible that it was not in her capacity as CD3 Chief of Staff but, rather, as a person volunteering on DeLong's election campaign, on her own time and at her own expense? If so, wouldn't Mr. Fritsch's statement be completely accurate and, if so, wouldn't your accusation that he lied be completely false?
Watts October 31, 2012 at 06:01 PM
John, you have crossed into the realm of ridiculousness. And I say this even after stating that I normally like how you interact with Ruehle and that I (while never actually engaging with Mike) really can't stand how he posts. But your argument is so weak, that I can't believe that you would try to split this hair. If I work for McDonald's and was in the video on my free time and somebody said that there were no McDonald's employees in the video, they would be incorrect in stating that. I might not be there representing McDonald's, but I would still be considered a McDonald's employee and to have been seen in the video. So if the wording from Fritsch was as you represent it here and this city staff person is in the video, then his statement is incorrect. Personally, I don't know if I would jump to calling it a lie, as that would imply some intet to deceive. It seems like such an insignificant issue and one that could be overlooked by somebody who may not have the same ability for facial recognition, that it may just be a mistake. Now if you were to make a more reasonable argument that it was a mistake and not a lie versus this nonsense about in what capacity that she was there, it wouldn't sound so ridiculous. I am not kidding John, you are killing your reputation as a straight shooter on here all in the name of defending Delong. Is he a family member of yours or an old roommate? I can't imagine why you are determined to sacrifice your own credibility so much for him.
John B. Greet October 31, 2012 at 06:09 PM
"John, you have crossed into the realm of ridiculousness." Watts, all I did was respectfully pose some reasonable questions. That you would ridicule the asking of respectful and reasonable questions surprises me, particularly in light of your recent revelation that during debates you view yourself as an "educator" and your debate opponents as little more than students in your "class." Do you generally ridicule your real "students" when they ask respectful and reasonable questions, Watts? How does that generally work for you as an instructional tool in your actual "classrooms?"
Mike Ruehle November 01, 2012 at 03:21 AM
Here you go Greet. The list of 59 Belmont Shore businesses that have alcohol licenses. Some businesses have more than one type of ABC license. 225860 7 ELEVEN 242940 ABC FINE WINE & SPIRITS 464696 ACAPULCO INN 397967 ANGELOS ITALIAN DELI 467664 ARCO 470427 AROMA DI ROMA 515634 BABETTES FEAST 500910 BARRYS BEACH SHACK 245828 BEL SHORE LIQUORS 234844 BELMONT BREWING COMPANY 439868 BELMONT STATION 328060 BJS PIZZA AND GRILL 509175 BOUBOUFFE GRILLE 359844 BUONA GENTE 216561 CAFFE GAZELLE 402298 CAFFE LA STRADA WIP CALIFORNIA SHABU SHABU 215558 CHUCKS COFFEE SHOP 412449 DOMENICOS 252885 DOROTHY TARANTINE 483852 GASLAMP 434123 GEORGES GREEK CAFE 276405 GRANADA DELI & LIQUOR 475089 LA CREPERIE 351414 LA PALAPA 517449 LEGENDS 45095 LIQUOR LOCKER 210682 LUCILLES SMOKEHOUSE 453893 MAGIC LAMP GRILL 502568 ME SOO HUNGRY 523283 MURPHYS PUB AT THE BELMONT 414668 NATRAJ CUISINE OF INDIA 513572 NICKS ON 2ND 427365 NYS UPPERCRUST PIZZA 416865 OLIVE'S GOURMET GROCER 426103 OPEN SESAME 463791 OPEN SESAME 148348 PANAMA JOES 348410 PHUKET THAI 505747 QUINNS IRISH PUB 436839 RILEYS ON 2ND 152943 RIPPLES 329032 RITE AID 523982 ROE RESTAURANT 429956 ROMANCE ETC 426474 ROUND TABLE PIZZA 339365 RUBIOS
Mike Ruehle November 01, 2012 at 03:22 AM
59 continued: 304837 SHANNONS BAYSHORE 516628 SIMMZYS 266465 SUPER MEX RESTAURANTS 303144 SUPER MEX RESTAURANTS INC 511421 SUSHI ON FIRE 473683 SUSHI SAURUS 319312 TACO SURF 507459 TAVERN ON 2 482374 THAI GOURMET 194374 VONS 402388 YANKEE DOODLES 411099 YEN JAPANESE RESTAURANT Don't forget about the additional 14 Naples businesses with alcohol licenses. 341028 CROWS COCKTAILS 398438 FORA 462556 K C BRANAGHANS 488876 KELLYS RESTAURANT 454160 MICHAELS ON NAPLES 507892 MICHAELS PIZZERIA 462761 NAPLES GOURMET GROCER 275790 NAPLES RIB CO 511593 NAPLES SUSHI 389662 NICOS 402571 NIKO NIKO SUSHI 224134 RUSSOS RESTAURANT 449601 SMALL CAFE THE 317077 SUSHI OF NAPLES
Watts November 01, 2012 at 05:56 AM
It is completely reasonable to ponder if she was there in an official capacity or not, if that was the actual question. But if the question is if there were staff in the video and if she was in the video, then your point was not only irrelevant, but I would guess that you would already knew this and were using it as a rhetorical tool to cloud the issue and not to contribute anything of value. Kind of like when you keep reverting back to the "edited" flip flop video, when everybody has long since moved on to only referring to the complete video. These aren't meant as valid arguments but as distracting tools for more causal readers who may only read the last post of two in an article thread. And I have long since moved on from those classrooms and admittedly, part of that change in career path many years ago was because I know that I don't have patience for for teh slow kid in the class and I can't hand hold certain people for hours on end until they finally "get it" when 99.9% of the class already "got it." That is not for me. That other thread should make it obvious. One, two maybe even three rounds of trying to explain that to you and my head was ready to explode. Remember how I used to say to you; "John, you are smarter than this." You may have also noticed that I don't say that to you anymore.
met00 November 01, 2012 at 06:02 AM
Ouch. John, that hurt...
Mike Ruehle November 01, 2012 at 07:32 AM
Here you go Greet. The list of 59 Belmont Shore businesses that have alcohol licenses. SOME OF THESE BUSINESSES HAVE MORE than one ABC license. 225860 7 ELEVEN 242940 ABC FINE WINE & SPIRITS 464696 ACAPULCO INN 397967 ANGELOS ITALIAN DELI 467664 ARCO 470427 AROMA DI ROMA 515634 BABETTES FEAST 500910 BARRYS BEACH SHACK 245828 BEL SHORE LIQUORS 234844 BELMONT BREWING COMPANY 439868 BELMONT STATION 328060 BJS PIZZA AND GRILL 509175 BOUBOUFFE GRILLE 359844 BUONA GENTE 216561 CAFFE GAZELLE 402298 CAFFE LA STRADA WIP CALIFORNIA SHABU SHABU 215558 CHUCKS COFFEE SHOP 412449 DOMENICOS 252885 DOROTHY TARANTINE 483852 GASLAMP 434123 GEORGES GREEK CAFE 276405 GRANADA DELI & LIQUOR 475089 LA CREPERIE 351414 LA PALAPA 517449 LEGENDS 45095 LIQUOR LOCKER 210682 LUCILLES SMOKEHOUSE 453893 MAGIC LAMP GRILL 502568 ME SOO HUNGRY 523283 MURPHYS PUB AT THE BELMONT 414668 NATRAJ CUISINE OF INDIA 513572 NICKS ON 2ND 427365 NYS UPPERCRUST PIZZA 416865 OLIVE'S GOURMET GROCER 426103 OPEN SESAME 463791 OPEN SESAME 148348 PANAMA JOES 348410 PHUKET THAI 505747 QUINNS IRISH PUB 436839 RILEYS ON 2ND 152943 RIPPLES 329032 RITE AID 523982 ROE RESTAURANT 429956 ROMANCE ETC 426474 ROUND TABLE PIZZA 339365 RUBIOS Continued below
Mike Ruehle November 01, 2012 at 07:36 AM
Belmont Shore alcohol licenses contined from above: 304837 SHANNONS BAYSHORE 516628 SIMMZYS 266465 SUPER MEX RESTAURANTS 303144 SUPER MEX RESTAURANTS INC 511421 SUSHI ON FIRE 473683 SUSHI SAURUS 319312 TACO SURF 507459 TAVERN ON 2 482374 THAI GOURMET 194374 VONS 402388 YANKEE DOODLES 411099 YEN JAPANESE RESTAURANT Don't forget about the additional 14 Naples businesses with alcohol licenses. 341028 CROWS COCKTAILS 398438 FORA 462556 K C BRANAGHANS 488876 KELLYS RESTAURANT 454160 MICHAELS ON NAPLES 507892 MICHAELS PIZZERIA 462761 NAPLES GOURMET GROCER 275790 NAPLES RIB CO 511593 NAPLES SUSHI 389662 NICOS 402571 NIKO NIKO SUSHI 224134 RUSSOS RESTAURANT 449601 SMALL CAFE THE 317077 SUSHI OF NAPLES 73 is the total number of alcohol licenses in Belmont Shore & Naples if you count businesses that hold more than one alcohol license as only having one license.
John B. Greet November 01, 2012 at 02:58 PM
Watts, I'll try this one more time then I am afraid I will have to leave it be. If Ms. Cramer was not present at the event in her capacity as CD3 Chief of Staff but, rather, in the capacity of an unpaid, volunteer campaign worker, then the answer to the question of whether or not there were any City staff in the video is quite accurately "no." (assuming, and this seems a safe assumption, that it is only Ms. Cramer around which the entire question revolves.) You have said, I believe, that you have some familiarity and/or formal training with logic and critical thinking. Perhaps you should consider reviewing some of your notes?
John B. Greet November 01, 2012 at 03:02 PM
Let's see, Ruehle, first you claimed that there were "68 businesses in Belmont Shore that have alcohol licenses." Now you have gone to the trouble of actually listing the *59* businesses you *could* find, and yet still seem unable to put on your big boy pants and simply admit that your initial comment was false. Thanks for the effort but why can't you ever seem to simply let the actual *facts* speak for themselves without always trying to misstate, embellish, twist or outright manufacture them to your own advantage? At the very least, why can't you simply admit that you made a simple mistake and then seek to correct the record? You really do not get it do you? I agree with you that there are too many alcohol licenses in the and near the Shore. I have, in fact, said this many times on this site and others. The difference between you and me is that I don't share your apparent need to deceive others while trying to make my points. One day I really hope you are able to mature a bit and grow out of that unfortunate habit of yours of false, fraudulent, and otherwise misleading commentary. I think it really costs you a great deal in credibility.
James November 03, 2012 at 11:04 PM
Here's video of the Tracker working in Alan Lowenthal's office. Alan Lowenthal says the tracker does not work for him. Alan Lowenthal is a liar. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gSN56K2jhx0&feature=youtu.be
John B. Greet November 04, 2012 at 01:16 AM
Now *that's* interesting, but I don't know that I would rely upon it as proof of anything. Is this the same person? If so, does her sitting at a desk prove she works for Lowenthal? Might she not have simply been visiting with communications from the the Cal. Dem. Party and sat down to check her email? Finally, I don't at all approve of the tactic of entering a political campaign office -which, I believe is private property- under some sort of pretext and then filming people without their knowledge or consent (if that's what happened here.) Doing this could also have been a violation of the law. Perhaps the Patch should consider protecting itself here and disallowing the posting of a link to a video clip that could have been recorded illegally.

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