Right wing gym owner Ian Smith was arrested for drunk driving after failing a field sobriety test, but he made sure the officer knew he was running for Congress.
On March 27, Smith—a vocal Trump supporter, anti-masker and anti-vaxxer—was driving on Route 130 in his lifted pickup truck aggressively swerving in and out of his lane. An officer pulled him over on suspicion he was driving under the influence and asked Smith if he had anything to drink that night.
Smith said he had a margarita.
Body cam footage shows the arresting officers performing a sobriety test on Smith and picked up on the subsequent exchange.
Watch the video below:
This was not Smith's first rodeo.
In 2007, he was convicted of vehicular manslaughter after killing a 19-year-old college student while drunk driving.
"Glad they got him before he killed another person."
"You'd think he'd learn his lesson after killing a teenager but some guys never learn."
Another person tweeted:
"Surprise, surprise; everyone remember MAGA's favorite New Jersey Gym Owner turned Congressional Candidate Ian Smith?"
"Well, he was once again pulled over for a DUI & if you remember the last time, he killed a 19-year-old!"
"This time, he pulled the 'you know who I am card'."
Someone else remarked:
"'You know who I am?'"
"Correct response: 'A repeat offender'."
After failing the test, the police arrested the gym owner having established probable cause he was driving drunk.
Smith protested saying:
“Standing out here on a windy highway, I did not pass that test that you just gave me?"
"You’re submitting me to balance tests, which I did."
After informing Smith he did not pass the test, the officer proceeded with the arrest.
Smith again challenged:
“You’re taking me into custody and I didn’t fail anything."
"I’m in handcuffs because of an accusation.”
He was then placed into the squad car.
At that point, Smith—seemingly attempting to intimidate the police—said:
“You know I’m a congressional candidate for this district, right?”
The gym owner is attempting to secure the GOP nomination for the 3rd Congressional District.
The controversial public figure's social media is filled with anti-masker, anti-vaxxer, pro-Trump memes, far-right rhetoric and pandemic misinformation. During more stringent health restrictions due to COVID, Smith was fined over $120,000 for violating pandemic-related ordinances and lockdown orders at his gym.
Smith questioned whether the officer was paid off to arrest him. The officer said he was just doing his job.
Many are pleading with New Jersey voters to keep Smith out of Congress.
One person posted:
"This dude is a perfect example of the radical GQP trying to infiltrate our Congress."
"NJ, PLEASE consider another candidate when voting."
How this incident will impact Smith's chances in the election or eligibility to run is unclear as of this writing.