NEW YORK (CBS) ― Mayor Michael Bloomberg had a run-in with a reporter during a press conference on same-sex marriage on Thursday. The incident shocked many and now the disabled blogger wants an apology. Here, Speaker Christine Quinn tries to explain situation to the mayor. Needless to say, Mayor Michael Bloomberg doesn’t like to be interrupted – regardless of the reason. But that’s precisely what happened during his same-sex marriage press conference on Thursday. “This is a too important to be disrupted,” Bloomberg said. “Maybe we just take everything outside.”

It was a moment of silence anything but respectful. Bloomberg stopped mid-sentence when he heard a tape recorder playing in the audience. Wheelchair-bound reporter Michael Harris, a blogger for, had no idea, but it was him. “We ultimately found that I had an audio recorder in the pocket of my overcoat which was hanging on the chair next to me that had fallen on the floor,” Harris told CBS 2 HD. Someone had accidentally pressed play, and Harris couldn’t reach it. That didn’t stop the mayor from staring him down.

“Having the mayor do this to me, with TV channels carrying this live, not only locally but nationally was incredibly embarrassing, was incredibly degrading and I quite frankly felt humiliated by the whole ordeal,” Harris said. The mayor glared at me and said ‘stop it,’ and I couldn’t figure out what he was talking about.” New York City Council Speaker Christine Quinn leaned over to tell Bloomberg that Harris was in a wheelchair, but when asked later, Bloomberg was unrepentant.

So, I wonder what he meant by “Maybe we just take everything outside.”?

  1. Improbus says:

    If having money and power turn you into a dick like the Mayor I am glad I don’t have either.

  2. rf farms says:

    Mayor was OK, reporter is Not. What does Disabled reporter mean. They get special treatment?

  3. Jägermeister says:

    Deport Bloomberg to Israel.

  4. Dallas says:

    Agree. What a dick.

  5. Mr. Fusion says:

    It seems like the Mayor is having a bad time lately. That can’t be good for his campaign. Too bad, so sad, bye bye Mr. Bloomberg.

  6. Delta Dan says:

    I agree with rf, the mayor was doing what most people would have done in that situation. I think he just meant to take the noise outside. It was just one of those things, the reporter needs to be an adult about it and wipe away the tears!

  7. billabong says:

    Hey!!!! stop it! if you can’t stand a little heat stay out of the kitchen.

  8. David says:

    I can understand not wanting to hear music during a press conference. Not sure what he meant about taking it outside though.

  9. god says:

    Disabled folks I know would rather not be bothered by a klutz – disabled or otherwise, reporter or otherwise.

  10. algore says:

    Just a new yorker being a new yorker. where’s the news here?

  11. deowll says:

    It’s your job to take care of your hardware be it cellphone or recorder. Get one that uses flash memory then use it to record events!

    There are fold up devices that will allow you to pick up something that you dropped from a wheel chair.

  12. JimR says:

    From the mayor’s standpoint, the interruption would naturally feel very rude in the first instant. It’s not like all reporters are reserved and tactful. Depending on his current mood he would naturally have a reaction… a range of “please turn that off” to just about anything imaginable. A disapproving stare isn’t unreasonable.

    Unfortunately for both people, the interruption was due to an error. Since this happened in the midst of an important conference which had to proceed, the full details of the mistake would take a while to get back to the mayor. I’m sure he feels an “oops”… anyone with normal feelings would.

    The reporter, in asking for an apology is really trying to get revenge… embarrass the mayor by prolonging his faux pas. Asking for (forcing) an apology serves no other purpose.

    Ethically, the reporter should first apologize for the mistake… it was his recorder after all, mistake or not. The mayor should then respond with an apology for misinterpreting interruption. Unfortunately, no one is that perfect. Both are in the wrong IMHO.

    JimR Landers

  13. goaty says:

    Be disabled had nothing to do with it. Shouldn’t all reporters be seated anyway?

    The mayor should have cracked a few jokes like the White House press secretary making it a party atmosphere so that nobody cares about the message.

  14. Ron Larson says:

    The reporter screwed up and the reporter should apologize. But nooooo. He wants to use his handicap and play the victim card.

    How is the hell was the mayor supposed to know that a reporter couldn’t control his own equipment and therefore was supposedly exempt from taking responsibility. Maybe this reporter needs to find another line of work if he can’t handle the job.


  15. SparkyOne says:

    So what exactly was the most important social issue facing New York, non-opposite marriage or the press conference or the dude in the wheelchair?

    Or the unemployed or or Goldman’s Sack or those loosing their homes or wall street bullshit or…

  16. Steve says:

    #14 You said it best. I concur entirely.

  17. sargasso says:

    A tape recording of people’s “flatus events”, loudly playing in the conference, might have been completely ignored.

  18. The Warden says:

    I’d like to see Mayor Douchebag have a stare down with Larry David.

  19. jccalhoun says:

    The mayor seemed to be humorless about it but I don’t see why this matters. The guy being disabled doesn’t seem relevant.

  20. Jägermeister says:

    #19 – jccalhoun

    He could have made a joke about it and everything would have been over in seconds… For all his wrongs, Dubya knew how to disarm mishaps and tense situations.

  21. Zybch says:

    “Having the mayor do this to me was incredibly embarrassing, was incredibly degrading and I quite frankly felt humiliated”

    So how bout the mayor who earned (well, you know, got elected) his high office being interrupted by some gimp in a chair who didn’t take care of his shit?!
    You don’t think he felt “embarrassed, incredibly degraded and humiliated” by the rude thoughtless actions of this crip?

    Any serious reporter makes sure they aren’t gonna screw things up by doing something like this.

    This is a prime example why all press conferences should be held at the tops of steep stairs!

  22. Scott says:

    When did the Mayor become a preofessional golfer?

    The name of the office is Mayor, not Emperor.

    There must be thousands of NYC K-12 teachers shaking their heads in wonder: “He stopped for that”?

  23. McCullough says:

    #20. Yes, that would have been the way to handle it.

  24. Dubious at best says:

    The worst thing about this incident is the way it is being SPUN by the press and the poster. Just because you lean it your way doesn’t always mean that is the way it will fall as is apparent by the number of responses not leaning towards the braying reporter.

  25. Mac Guy says:

    He stared down a reporter for interrupting him. Big deal. Oh, the reporter is in a wheelchair?

    Hold the presses! This changes everything!

    Or wait. No, get a grip. It doesn’t change a damn thing. STFU. Carry on.

  26. Hmeyers says:

    Much ado about virtually nothing at all.

    This is what passes as “news” these days.

  27. mr show says:

    Yah this not News but BlogNews (TM). I got a kick about the Governor saying that that it was Bloomberg’s theme music.

    Ah well Bloomberg always came across as some sanctimonious, uptight A-hole but I suppose people should control their tech.

    If only Robert Gibbs, at a recent press conference, had that death-like stare, the reporter would not have answered his cell phone and left the room! yikes.

  28. mr show says:

    As much of ass of Bloomberg is, I loved the uncomfortable expressions and squirming of the politicians behind him. Talk about an uncomfortable silence by people who are used to gabbing and spinning the facts.

    Stay classy New York!

  29. Thinker says:

    Ummm stands to reason, if you want to be invited back with the big boys, you gotta be able to keep your stuff under control…would have been no different if any other reporter’s cell phone had gone off.

    Guys asking for special treatment.

  30. Special Ed says:

    This guy and Alfred1 may have been separated at birth.


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