DVO MELTDOWN: Profane Outburst Draws National Headlines & Bipartisan Rebuke

Jul 28, 2023

DVO MELTDOWN: Profane Outburst Draws National Headlines & Bipartisan Rebuke

MADISON, Wis.Derrick Van Orden’s profane outburst at teenagers participating in the U.S. Senate Page Program continued to draw national headlines and bipartisan rebuke, including from GOP Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell. Van Orden has so far refused to apologize for his expletive-laden outburst, which echoes a past incident in which Van Orden verbally harassed a teenager working at a public library.

POLITICOSchumer, McConnell defend Senate pages against Republican lawmaker’s curses

“Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell backed Schumer’s defense of the pages, saying he would like to ‘associate myself with the remarks of the majority leader’ and ‘everybody on this side of the aisle feels exactly the same way.’ Speaker Kevin McCarthy told reporters on Friday that he had spoken with Schumer about the Van Orden incident, but hadn’t yet spoken with the Wisconsin Republican.”

THE HILLMcCarthy to talk to Republican who yelled expletives at Senate pages

“Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) on Friday said he plans to talk to Rep. Derrick Van Orden (R-Wis.) about his expletive-laced confrontation with teenage Senate pages early Thursday morning. ‘I haven’t been able to speak to him yet. I’ll call him today. I don’t know the situation, I saw what was reported,’ McCarthy told reporters Friday.”

WALL STREET JOURNALGOP Rep. Derrick Van Orden Has No Apologies After Berating Teenage Senate Pages

“A first-term Republican congressman lashed out at a group of teenage Senate pages and later declined to apologize, drawing a rebuke from the leaders of the Senate. Rep. Derrick Van Orden (R., Wis.) used expletives to reprimand pages who were lying on the floor to take photos of the domed Capitol Rotunda around midnight late Wednesday.”

WASHINGTON POSTCongressman reportedly cursed out Senate pages from Capitol Rotunda

“It’s not the first time Van Orden has been accused of a public outburst. In 2021, Kerrigan Trautsch, then a 17-year-old page at the Prairie du Chien Memorial Library in Wisconsin, told the La Crosse Tribune that Van Orden was angry and complained loudly about a display of books in the children’s section of the library curated for LGBTQ+ Pride Month. Trautsch told the Tribune that after the incident she told her parents she didn’t feel safe at work anymore. Van Orden at the time responded by saying he supported equal rights for all Americans, including those who are part of the LGBTQ+ community.”

NEWSWEEK: Republican Defends Screaming Expletives at Resting Teens

“Van Orden defended his actions in a statement released on Thursday, arguing that he was protecting the Capitol Rotunda as a “symbol of sacrifice” since it served as a field hospital during the Civil War. […] No soldiers are actually buried at the Capitol, while it is reportedly not uncommon for pages to rest near the Capitol Rotunda when the Senate is in session late, as was the case on Wednesday.”

THE HILL: Murray to GOP lawmaker who cursed at teen pages: ‘Learn to respect others, especially kids’

“Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wash.) criticized the Republican lawmaker who cursed at a group of teenage Senate pages on Thursday, suggesting that he should ‘learn to respect others, especially kids.’ ‘My message to the Senate Pages: This is one of the most amazing experiences you’ll ever have. Take it in. Learn a lot. And of course, have fun,’ Murray said on X, the platform formerly known as Twitter. ‘My message to out-of-line Members of Congress who yell at Senate Pages: Learn to respect others, especially kids,’ she added. Rep. Derrick Van Orden (R-Wis.) yelled at the pages, a group of 16- and 17-year-olds who assist Senate operations, early Thursday morning as they rested in the Capitol rotunda.”

WISCONSIN EXAMINERReport: Van Orden curses out group of teenage congressional pages

“In 2021, Van Orden used campaign donations to attend the protest in Washington D.C. that ultimately led to the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol. Despite saying he did not enter Capitol grounds, photos and reports have placed him beyond police barriers that day. The first-term congressman has a history of incidents involving teenagers. In 2021 staff members of the Prairie du Chien library accused him of harassing a 17-year-old library employee over a display of LGBTQ-related books. Van Orden, who represents western Wisconsin’s 3rd Congressional District, has also been criticized for sharing in his 2015 book that while serving as a Navy SEAL he exposed another man’s swollen genitals to two female officers. He has also been fined for trying to bring a gun on an airplane in his carryon luggage.”

THE HILL: ‘Jackasses,’ ‘little s‑‑‑‑’: GOP congressman curses out teenage Senate pages

“Rep. Derrick Van Orden (R-Wis.) is in hot water after he cursed out a group of teenage Senate pages in the Capitol rotunda early Thursday morning. According to a transcript written by a page minutes after the incident and obtained by The Hill, Van Orden called the pages “jackasses” and ‘pieces of s‑‑‑,’ and told them he didn’t ‘give a f‑‑‑ who you are.’” 

FORBES‘Get The F— Out’: Wisconsin Congressman Curses Out High School Pages In Capitol, Reports Say

“This incident isn’t the first time Van Orden has expressed anger at a page. In June 2021, Van Orden reportedly entered a Wisconsin library and complained about a display featuring books about homosexuality in the children’s section that was part of the library’s Pride Month display, the Associated Press reported. The page Van Orden asked about the display said he was angry and that taxpayers shouldn’t have to see the books. Van Orden has faced other scandals, too. When running for office, he faced criticism over his 2015 book in which he wrote about a time when he exposed a male lieutenant’s genitalia to two young female officers. Van Ordern later said he was instructing officers in medical treatment in the situation described. His opponent, incumbent Ron Kind said the “sexual harassment detailed in his book is not something to brag about,” adding it was “outrageous and wrong,” the La Crosse Tribune reported.”

CBS 58 MILWAUKEE: ‘Get the F – up’: Wisconsin Congressman Van Orden curses, yells at high school students during Capitol tour 

“In response to the incident, Democrats slammed Van Orden by referencing other incidents such as being outside the Capitol during the Jan. 6 insurrection in 2021. ‘This unhinged behavior directed towards 16 and 17-year-old kids is disqualifying and is only the latest example of Van Orden’s disturbing conduct,’ Joe Oslund, a spokesman for the Democratic Party of Wisconsin said. ‘Derrick Van Orden has demonstrated time and again that he simply lacks the temperament and good judgment to serve.’”

NEW REPUBLIC“Lazy Shits”: Republican Congressman Curses Teenage Senate Pages

“‘I would think that I’d be terribly disrespectful to lay on the grave of a soldier that died fighting for freedom,’ Van Orden told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. ‘And I don’t know anybody that disagrees. ‘Van Orden did not seem to recognize that a hospital and a cemetery are two different things—and the Capitol Rotunda is neither one of them.”

AXIOSGOP congressman defends profanity-laced rant at teens in Capitol

“Rep. Derrick Van Orden (R-Wisc.) isn’t backing down in the face of reporting on his Wednesday evening treatment of a group of Senate pages in the Capitol rotunda. Driving the news: Van Orden told a group of teenage pages to “get the f**k up” after he encountered them lying on the floor of the Capitol rotunda taking photos of the dome, Punchbowl News reported on Thursday. The Wisconsinite also called the pages ‘jacka**es’ and ‘pieces of s**t,’ according to a transcript obtained by The Hill.”

MSNBC: GOP’s Van Orden reportedly berates teenage Senate pages with profane rant

“Nevertheless, it’s terribly unfortunate that a congressman thought it’d be appropriate to upbraid kids with a profane rant. The fact that the Wisconsin Republican hasn’t apologized makes the story worse. But let’s not forget what else has made him famous. As regular readers might recall, Van Orden also went to Capitol Hill on Jan. 6, 2021. According to his version of events, he left when the pro-Trump mob became violent, and he insisted that he did not enter the grounds of the Capitol itself, though a Daily Beast report later called Van Orden’s claims into question. (The congressman rejected the accuracy of the article.)”

ABC NEWS: Senate leaders rebuke lawmaker after reports of profanity-laced rant at teen pages

“Senate leaders on Thursday came to the defense of high-school pages after reports that Rep. Derrick Van Orden, R-Wis., berated a group of the teens in the Capitol in a profanity-laced rant. In floor speeches Thursday before departing for August recess, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell indirectly rebuked Van Orden as they praised the work done by pages on what was their final day.”