Silver-tongued former President Barack Obama, speaking in Detroit on behalf of Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, was thrown off his rhetorical game by a persistent heckler on Saturday.
Ironically, Obama was lamenting the rise in heated and sometimes violent political rhetoric while referencing the recent attack on Paul Pelosi, husband of Speaker Nancy Pelosi, when an unidentified man in the crowd yelled, “Mr. President!”
What the heckler was saying after that was not clear from initial video from the event, but Obama’s response was.
“Sir, this is what I’m saying,” a frustrated Obama retorted, according to Fox News. “We’ve got a process that we set up in our democracy.”
Obama went on to say, “Right now, I’m talking. You’ll have a chance to talk sometime later. You wouldn’t do that in a workplace.”
The crowd seemed as exasperated as the former president by the man’s outburst and the back-and-forth exchange between the two that followed.
The crowd booed the heckler and then began repeatedly chanting “Obama!”
From the video, it appeared the heckler was led away and removed from the venue.
Conservative commentator Benny Johnson likened the fallout from the dust-up to an interaction between a novice instructor and unruly pupils.
“Obama trying to get the crowd to pay attention to him after getting heckled reminds me of a student teacher trying to control a classroom,” he tweeted.
Obama trying to get the crowd to pay attention to him after getting heckled reminds me of a student teacher trying to control a classroom 😂 pic.twitter.com/4lu3eB4IzJ
— Benny Johnson (@bennyjohnson) October 29, 2022
The former president attempted to use the incident as a teachable moment as he struggled to get the crowd to settle down.
“Not only is this an example of what I’m talking about,” Obama told the audience, “but it’s also an example of how we get distracted.”
To make his point, Obama referenced Dug the “talking” dog in the Pixar move “Up,” who is easily distracted by a squirrel.
“That’s us with politics,” he quipped.
Obama was interrupted twice by hecklers during the event, according to the Detroit Free Press.
The former president is on the campaign trail for the upcoming midterm elections that will determine whether Democrats can hold on to their razor-thin majority in the House and power in the evenly divided Senate, where Vice President Kamala Harris provides the tie-breaking vote.
Conventional wisdom and polling indicate Democrats are in for an electoral drubbing.
The midterm elections are set for Nov. 8.
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.