Warren opponent allegedly struck outside Mahaiwe event, files charges

By Christopher McDermott

GREAT BARRINGTON — Political tensions flared outside of the town hall meeting held this week by Sen. Elizabeth Warren at the Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center, peaking when a Hillsdale, NY man allegedly pushed a bullhorn into the face of Warren’s senate race opponent Shiva Ayyadurai. Ayyadurai had spent the hours before the event across the street from the Mahaiwe, and the long line of people waiting to go in, calling the senator and her supporters racists with the same bullhorn.

Paul D. Solovay, 74, is charged with one count of assault and battery and one count of disorderly conduct after allegedly pushing Ayyadurai’s bullhorn microphone into his face outside of the Mahaiwe before Warren’s town hall event on July 22.

After the confrontation, Solovay told the crowd through his megaphone that his lip had been cut.

The confrontation was captured on video by one of Ayyadurai’s supporters. The same video has since circulated across the internet.

Ayyadurai, 54, of Belmont, is running as an independent against Warren for the U.S Senate seat up for election in 2018. He’s a technology entrepreneur with degrees from MIT and a former Fulbright scholar. Boston Magazine called him “The Shock Candidate.”

At the event, a few of Ayyadurai’s supporters held a banner showing Warren in Native American regalia captioned, “#FakeAmerican.” The same banner read, “Resist! Elizabeth Warren, the Real Racist.”

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