- The Washington Times - Thursday, November 28, 2019

Ken Cuccinelli, the acting deputy secretary of the Department of Homeland Security, was reportedly chased out of a Capitol Hill bar Wednesday by former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley, who berated him over the Trump administration’s immigration stance.

According to a witness who took to Twitter after the incident, Mr. Cuccinelli was driven out of a Thanksgiving Eve party at the Dubliner — a bar popular among Gonzaga High School graduates, a school both Mr. Cuccinelli and Mr. O’Malley attended.

“Martin O’Malley just drove Ken Cuccinelli out of the Dubliner in DC w/ a passion-laced and shame-invoking tirade on behalf of immigrant refugee children!!!” Siobhan Houton Arnold tweeted.

In a followup interview with The Washington Post, Ms. Arnold — who works in Villanova University’s media relations — said Mr. O’Malley was “shouting” at Mr. Cuccinelli, who only responded that it was “time to go” before leaving the bar.

“He pretty much retreated,” Ms. Arnold said.

Mr. Cuccinelli gave a different account in a statement later to The Washington Times, saying Mr. O’Malley had his veins popping out while “cursing me, the President, and my Italian ancestry.

“He got right up in my face, bumped up against me and invited me to take a swing at him, at which point I said ‘Martin, one of us has to rise above this, and it’s obviously not going to be you,’” Mr. Cuccinelli wrote.

Mr. O’Malley confirmed the altercation to The Post via text but disagreed that he was “shouting” at Mr. Cuccinelli, saying he was raising his voice “just to be heard” in the loud bar.

The former governor — who served from 2006 to 2014 and made an unsuccessful presidential bid in 2016 — said he wasn’t the only one to call out Mr. Cuccinelli, who he described as “the son of immigrant parents who cages children for a fascist president.”

“We all let him know how we felt about him putting refugee immigrant kids in cages,” Mr. O’Malley said, adding it is “certainly not what we were taught by the Jesuits at Gonzaga.”

Mr. Cuccinelli, who took the reins of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services in June, took exception in his statement to Mr. O’Malley’s characterization of immigration policy.

“Some of his comments [were] particularly odd because they applied to President Obama’s policies, a fact he clearly did not appreciate me pointing out (without screaming it, btw),” the former Virginia attorney general wrote.

• Victor Morton contributed to this report.

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