You know those hecklers who show up at political speeches and rallies? It turns out that not all of them are political activists with an ax to grind. Some are actually paid to heckle, and the Obama campaign admits to doing it.
The protesters popping up at Mitt Romney's rallies throughout Michigan Tuesday look like run-of-the-mill grassroots liberals -- they wave signs about "the 99 percent," they chant about the Republican's greed, and they describe themselves as a loosely organized coalition of "concerned citizens."
They're also getting paid, two of the protesters and an Obama campaign official told BuzzFeed.
At the candidate's afternoon stop outside a bakery in DeWitt, a group of about 15 protesters stood behind a police barricade, a few of them chanting in support of Obama. Asked why he was protesting, a man dressed in a grim reaper costume pointed a reporter to a pair of "designated representatives" standing in the shade.
"I can't talk, you gotta get one of those people over there to talk to y'all," he said. "They're the ones who can talk to reporters."
The Buzzfeed.com report goes on to note that two protesters "said they were getting paid to stand outside of the rally, though their wage is unclear: one said she was getting $7.25 per hour, while another man said they were being paid $17 per hour." Not a bad payment to stand around and disrupt a Mitt Romney speech. Is this part of Obama's job stimulus plan?