A Minneapolis Democrat endorsing convention was completely derailed after supporters for an insurgent candidate stormed the stage at a K-8 school and started a brawl.
Shocking video shows that the chaos first started with intense booing as team members for incumbent Ward 10 Councilmember Aisha Chughtai and her team took the stage at the Ella Baker Global Studies & Humanities Magnet School in hopes of obtaining the endorsement of the Minnesota Democratic–Farmer–Labor Party.
The fracas took a sharp turn after one woman from challenger Nasri Warsame’s team aggressively rushed toward a Chughtai supporter while shouting and pointing.
Other supporters from Warsame’s camp quickly followed suit and formed a mosh beneath the school’s stage.
The clash between camps — differentiated by Chughtai’s signature yellow shirts and Warsame’s blue signs — bled onto the stage, with the same Warsame supporter who initiated the melee belligerently slamming a table that was to be used for the endorsement proceedings.
“This is embarrassing! We are shutting this down! This is no longer safe!” convention chair Sam Doten said before officially adjourning the convention with a gavel slam.
Despite hearing reports of several injuries and fights, Minneapolis police declined to make any arrests, a spokesperson told the Star Tribune.
Cops said at least one person was taken to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries, while another was treated at the scene.
Warsame claimed that two members of his team were sent to the hospital with injuries sustained in the scuffle.
“My campaign manager has been assaulted by one of the other campaign staff member, and he’s now being transported to hospital by an ambulance,” the candidate claimed in a Facebook post.
Chughtai released a formal statement blaming Warsame for inciting the incident.
She claimed his campaign physically assaulted over a dozen volunteers, “punched multiple women of color” on her team and “shoved and harassed LGBTQIA2S+ delegates and supporters.”
“Today, during the Ward 10 Convention, the Nasri Warsame campaign continually made people feel unsafe. They intimidated delegates and alternates, harassed and threatened DFL volunteers, and assaulted me and my supporters,” Chughtai said.
The DFL said Saturday evening Warsame’s supporters were to blame for the incident.
Ken Martin, the DLF’s chairman, said the party will work with Minneapolis to determine next steps in the aftermath.
“Harassment and violence are unacceptable, and we expect candidates and their campaign teams to work hard to curb such behavior when it comes from their supporters, staffers, or volunteers,” Martin said in a statement.
“Warsame and his team took the opposite approach at today’s convention by escalating the situation and encouraging conflict.”