Romney aide to press: "Shove it"

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney leans down to talk to a child in front of The Gdansk Old Town Hall, in Gdansk, Poland, Monday, July 30, 2012. AP Photo/Charles Dharapak

Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney leans down to talk to a child in front of The Gdansk Old Town Hall, in Gdansk, Poland, Monday, July 30, 2012. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)
Charles Dharapak

(CBS News) The relationship between a presidential candidate and the press is often tenuous, but reporters covering Mitt Romney in Poland Tuesday found themselves in a tense verbal altercation with one of his aides after they tried to shout questions at the candidate.

After leaving an event with Warsaw Mayor Hanna Gronkiweicz at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, reporters, including one from The New York Times, yelled questions to Romney, who proceeded to ignore the queries, according to a pool report. As they were shouting their questions, Romney's travel press secretary Richard Gorka told the reporters to "show some respect."

After reporters protested, pointing out that Romney has only taken "but three questions" during his entire trip to London, Israel and Poland, Gorka said, "Kiss my a**. This is a holy site for the Polish people. Show some respect." The back and forth continued for a few seconds until Gorka ended the conversation with, "Why don't you shove it?"

(Audio of Romney's aide's altercation with the press.)

Gorka later called two of the reporters to apologize, but the ongoing battle over access between the press, who wants to talk more often with the candidate, and the Romney campaign appears to have hit another low.

On Monday, Fox News host Greta Van Susteren wrote on her blog, "There has been no press access to Governor Romney since we landed in Poland. We (press) are in a holding pattern (I can't help but feel a bit like the press is a modified petting zoo since we are trapped in a bus while Polish citizens take pictures of us.)"

  • Leigh Ann Caldwell On Twitter»

    Leigh Ann Caldwell is a political reporter for CBSNews.com.

Comments

Watch CBSN Live

Watch CBS News anytime, anywhere with the new 24/7 digital news network. Stream CBSN live or on demand for FREE on your TV, computer, tablet, or smartphone.