Jose Antonio Vargas, the Filipino journalist and former Washington Post reporter who has written about his life as an undocumented immigrant, was escorted out of a Mitt Romney rally in Cedar Rapids, Iowa on Friday. Security personnel removed Vargas--who showed up at the event with a homemade sign that read "I AM AN AMERICAN W/O PAPERS--because he did not have a press credential during a media-only session, the Romney campaign said.
According to CNN producer Rachel Streitfeld, who was at the event, Vargas was "causing a bit of a ruckus" with his sign. National Journal political correspondent Beth Reinhard, who was also there, said it appeared that Vargas showed up to pick a fight on immigration. Vargas, however, disputed their claims.
"I was not causing a ruckus," Vargas wrote on Twitter. "I was merely trying to ask a question, which is what a journalist does."
But Vargas was not allowed to do so without a credential.
"Mr. Vargas was allowed to attend the event in his capacity as an activist," Romney campaign spokesman Ryan Williams told Politico. "Our media event was for credentialed media only and he was asked to leave."
It appears that Vargas is enjoying the attention. Since being booted, he's been retweeting links to coverage of the incident.
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- Jose Antonio Vargas
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