Michael McNeely, the first vice chair of the Georgia Republicans, was escorted out of Atlanta’s Fox Theatre by Secret Service after being told there was “no more room for you” by Trump campaign state director Brandon Phillips, according to a party official briefed on the incident. The official requested anonymity said they were not authorized to speak on behalf of the party.
McNeely was stopped while trying to enter an area where Trump had been greeting supporters, the sources said. Neither Phillips, the Trump campaign, nor the Georgia Republican Party returned messages seeking comment.
McNeely is considered a rising star of the Georgia Republicans. Earlier this month he was named as an at-large delegate to the Republican National Convention and is a past chair of the Georgia Black Republican Council.
Reached by phone regarding the incident, McNeely told BuzzFeed News, “I’ll have to get back to you” before hanging up.
I rate this story is true for the simple reason that if it wasn’t true, McNeely and the Trump campaign would both be screaming denials. Why was the black vice chair of the Georgia GOP tossed from a reception for the presumptive nominee when Trump has single-handedly turned bright red Georgia into a bluish-purple swing state? Who knows. I’m sure there is a perfectly reasonable explanation. Perhaps the Trump kids were fighting over the blow-drier that morning and were feeling peevish. Maybe Paul Manafort’s Russian mob cronies didn’t like the cut of McNeely’s jib. Or it could be the dense miasma of arrogance and incompetence hovering about the Trump campaign that reeks like a corpse’s armpit.