Republican gubernatorial candidate Larry Elder got a rude welcome during a campaign stop Wednesday in Venice, where critics shouted as he walked through the area and a woman wearing a gorilla mask hurled an egg toward him, then threw punches at an aide who intervened.
The conservative talk show host arrived in Venice around 11:50 a.m. Wednesday, Sept. 8. A crowd gathered as he walked along the street toward a scheduled tour of a homeless encampment.
As the jeers escalated, video from the scene captured by Spectrum News 1 (see below) showed a woman on a bicycle and wearing a gorilla mask throwing an egg toward Elder, although it did not appear to hit anyone. A man believed to be a member of Elder’s staff approached the masked woman, who screamed in response and can be seen throwing at least two punches at the man. At least one other spectator got in the man’s face and hurled expletives at him.
During the altercation, Elder was quickly rushed into a nearby SUV and driven away from the scene. TMZ reported that a pellet gun was fired during the melee, although it was not captured on video.
Los Angeles Police Department Officer Tony Im said the department was looking into the incident, though no further details were released.
Elder, considered the top Republican candidate in the Sept. 14 recall election, told TMZ at a subsequent campaign stop that he wasn’t expecting a “ticker-tape parade” in Venice, and he attributed the incident to community anger over homelessness.
“There’s a lot of anger, a lot of unhappiness there,” Elder said, referring to the homelessness issue.
“People are angry. They’re frustrated. They want something done,” he told TMZ. “Homeowners want something done. Families want something done. Children that live there, they want something done. This is a danger not only to the homeless people but to the non-homeless people.”
Breaking: A flying egg narrowly missed the back of recall candidate @larryelder‘s head after it was thrown by an activist wearing a gorilla mask in Venice. A scuffle broke out and the candidate was escorted into an SUV.
— Kate Cagle (@KateCagle) September 8, 2021