Protestors Interrupt David Axelrod in Boston

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When the Obama team tried to criticize Mitt Romney in his backyard, it got an earful from the Republican's supporters.

Top Obama aide David Axelrod was in Boston Thursday for a press conference criticizing Mitt Romney's record as governor of the Bay State. But things didn't go quite as planned. A large contingent of Romney supporters showed up, chanting ("Where are the jobs! Where are the jobs!") and interrupting him. Others brandished a bubble machine and an air horn. For a man whose nickname is the rather intimidating "Axe," he sure seemed befuddled by the circus -- hence a hackneyed paraphrase of A Few Good Men, "You can't handle the truth, my friends!" Another retort had a bit more verve: "You can shout down a speaker, my friends, but you can't Etch A Sketch the truth."

It's a quite successful stunt by the Romney team, based in Boston, and one that sends a pretty clear message: You're in our house. This video demonstrates why it's so frustrating for the president's reelection team; at an event choreographed largely for TVs, most channels ended up with audio dominated by background noise. In this and other clips, it's tough to hear much of what Axelrod had to say. It sets a nasty precedent going forward; this kind of insult is unlikely to go unanswered, so we can look forward to similar disruptions.

Still, nothing here nears the standard for disruptiveness set in this amazing clip from the 2009 election for mayor of Toledo, Ohio, via Mike O'Brien:

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David A. Graham

David Graham is a senior associate editor at The Atlantic, where he oversees the Politics Channel. He previously reported for Newsweek, The Wall Street Journal, and The National.

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