What’s more likely: adolescents too young to care about politics egging the Pitkin County Republican headquarters, or adults too old for such a prank being the culprits?
The local GOP is faced with that question, as its campaign office at Aspen’s S-curves was tagged by egg-throwing vandals Friday night for at the third time in the last month, said party Chair Frieda Wallison.
This weekend’s incident was the worst, she said, with egg covering all the windows and each side of the Victorian home that serves as the party’s base.
“This is the worst it’s been, and it seems to be escalating,” Wallison said.
The latest incident was reported to Aspen police Saturday. Republican volunteers found an empty egg carton on the premises — the guilty party used the large grade-A variety from City Market — and turned it over to the cops as evidence.
Aspen police said they would keep an eye out for after-hours suspicious activity around the GOP house, Wallison said.
And while she doesn’t know if the incidents are connected, Wallison said local Republicans were subject to more shenanigans this weekend. While staffing the booth at the Saturday farmer’s market, Wallison said she was approached by a group of kids she estimated to be around 13 years old. They asked about the Romney/Ryan T-shirts the booth stocks, and if they were available for free. Wallison told the boys the shirts typically required a $15 donation. The boys appeared dejected, and said they didn’t have the cash.
This tugged at Wallison’s heart a bit, so she decided the local GOP could spare a T-shirt for one of the kids.
After she handed the shirt over, “He walked away toward his friends, who were sort of giggling, so I should have known,” Wallison said.
According to reports passed onto Wallison, one of the boys was later seen walking around the farmer’s market wearing the T-shirt, to which he had made his own editorial additions with a marker. On the back, he had written “Save Big Bird,” presumably referencing GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney’s promise to cut federal funding for PBS. On the front, under the Romney/Ryan logo, he had written “is hate.”
Wallison said she spent the rest of the afternoon looking for the group of boys around the market, but to no avail.
“I would’ve yanked the T-shirt right off of him,” Wallison said. “It was very disheartening. You’re trying to be magnanimous, but you are repaid in a way that is very disheartening.”
Wallison was trying to decide Sunday whether to hire a professional cleaning service to deal with the egg residue that still covered her building, or to leave it to her volunteers. Despite the mess, normal activity at the headquarters such as phone banking continued through the weekend.
“The fact that we are covered in egg is not turning anybody away,” she said.