A Virginia business owner says he was forced to call police after a customer confronted Steve Bannon inside his bookstore. Nick Cooke, owner of Black Swan Books in Richmond, tells the Richmond Times-Dispatch that a woman in his store called Bannon "a piece of trash" while the former White House chief strategist was in the store on Saturday. Cooke reportedly said he told the woman she had to leave. When she did not, he threatened to call police. Cooke said the woman left when he made the call to 911. “We are a bookshop," Cooke tells the newspaper. "Bookshops are all about ideas and tolerating different opinions." Bannon, a former media executive who became a household name when he helped President Trump defeat Hillary Clinton, is a Virginia native who attended high school in Richmond.
Richmond authorities confirmed a call was made and said it was canceled before police were dispatched to the store. As the Hill notes, the incident is among several high-profile confrontations between members of the public and political figures that have taken place recently. On the same day as the Bannon incident, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell was met outside a Louisville, Kentucky, restaurant by a group of pro-immigrant protesters who threatened to vote him out of office, apparently for his support of controversial ICE policies. In another high-profile Virginia incident, Sarah Huckabee Sanders was asked to leave by the proprietor of Red Hen restaurant in Lexington last month. (Read more Steve Bannon stories.)