Hillary Clinton and former President George W. Bush have had little in common until Thursday. That’s when a woman allegedly threw a shoe at Clinton during a speech at a Las Vegas hotel, an experience that Bush encountered in 2008 during a Baghdad news conference with the Iraqi prime minister.
Clinton was able to dodge the flying footwear, which she initially thought was a bat, and continue with her speech, a U.S. Secret Service spokesman told Reuters.
The woman was not a ticketed guest for Clinton’s speech at the Mandalay Bay hotel, and hotel security and the Secret Service were aware that the woman was a protester, Secret Service spokesman George Ogilvie told the news site.
“As agents and hotel security approached her, she threw a shoe and was immediately taken into custody by the Secret Service and hotel security,” Ogilvie said.
Video of the incident showed Clinton, 66, crouching to dodge the shoe and clutching her hands to her chest. A startled Clinton then asks, “Is that a bat? Was that a bat?” The woman can be seen leaving the hotel with her hands above her head.
The Las Vegas Review-Journal newspaper reports that the former secretary of state continued her speech and even joked about the incident, asking the audience of about 1,000 at a metal recycling convention: “Is that somebody throwing something at me? Is that part of Cirque du Soleil?
“My goodness! I didn’t know that solid waste management was so controversial.”
According to a spokesman for the Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries, which hosted the speech, the woman was denied entry to the event and later rushed past security and into the venue.
“Our staff denied her access before she later rushed past security,” ISRI spokesman Mark Carpenter told Reuters. “An ISRI staffer then stopped her as she approached the stage. She was then handed over to law enforcement.”