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Nick Lampson tried to hold a news conference this morning on the steps of the City Hall in Sugar Land, TX.  

As soon as he stepped to the microphone, he was swarmed by a group of DeLay supporters who all but prevented him from speaking.

Lampson called for DeLay to step down before June and claimed that DeLay is timing his departure so that he can influence his possible successor.

The protesters carried signs, shouted chants forcing to Lampson to yell over the crowd and eventually end the news conference.

The remaining supporters of DeLay and Lampson began yelling and even pushing each other, but no serious altercations developed. Police were called to the scene but no arrests were made.

According to Juanita at Brazosriver blog:

DeLay's campaign and a member of the State Republican Executive Committee called for volunteers to meet on the first floor of the parking garage and disrupt Lampson's press conference.

One elderly Democratic woman was slightly injured.

Lampson was eventually forced to end the press conference.

UPDATE [2006-4-6 1:21 by mini mum] Juanita has posted a direct quote from an e-mail sent out by DeLay Campaign Manager Chris Homan:

We would meet tomorrow morning at 9:45 am on the first floor of the parking garage attached to the Marriott. Please get folks to call our campaign office 281.343.1333 and let us know they can do it – or e-mail Leonard Cash (in the cc field above) so that we can get some head count. Let’s give Lampson a parting shot that wrecks his press conference.

UPDATE 2: Juanita has the statement of the 70 year old woman who was injured: "I can’t believe my Congressman, Tom DeLay, would organize this type of assault,” Rovai said. “I was assaulted by two different people. One of the men hit me and another shoved his sign into my face, and then when I pushed his sign away he violently pulled my hat down over my eyes and pushed me. I’m considering filing an assault charge. This is just very upsetting and I’m so disappointed in Tom Delay for organizing this attack."

Originally posted to mini mum on Thu Apr 06, 2006 at 09:52 AM PDT.

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