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The chairman of the House Administration Committee is fuming after he learned that a cafe worker who waited on Rep. Mark Souder (R-IN) when he blew up and stormed out because his sandwich came grilled instead of toasted has been fired from his job. The Hill reports on the outrage:
House Administration Committee Chairman Robert Brady (D-Pa.) is fuming after a cafeteria worker in the Capitol lost his job days after Rep. Mark Souder (R-Ind.) left the establishment in a huff because his sandwich was grilled, not toasted.
Kennison Battle, better known as “Mohammed,” was fired this week following the Souder incident. However, it is unclear if Battle’s termination and Souder’s stormy exit last week are related.
Regardless, Brady — who has jurisdiction over Capitol Hill campus issues — has been trying to get Battle his old job back.
“It’s ridiculous,” Brady said Wednesday. “Big guys gotta bother the little guys? What the hell is the matter with them? I don’t think he deserved to get fired. … It’s a shame.”
Brady spoke with Nicole Hall, the café manager, who told him she didn’t want to fire Battle, but was forced to.
“She was upset she had to fire him,” Brady said. When Brady asked to speak with David Anderson — Hall’s superior — Anderson declined to discuss the matter.
Brady subsequently approached House Chief Administrative Officer Dan Beard about the firing and is awaiting a response.
Battle’s former colleagues said he was well-liked.
“He seemed to be a pretty good gentleman,” said James Gaylor, a temporary sandwich and dessert maker at the café. “I knew him for four days.”
A female café employee who spoke anonymously said she knows that “Battle was a good employee” who “talks well with the customers.”
The Hill reported on the Souder café incident on Tuesday. Earlier this week, Souder spokesman Martin Green stated in an e-mail: “Mr. Souder was asked for — and gave — his order three times. After around 20 minutes, he was still waiting, so he canceled the order and walked out so as to get to his next meeting on time. Despite the poor service, he decided not to file a complaint.”
The sad thing for this poor cafe worker is that nothing would have happened to him had The Hill not reported on the incident. You know those gossip column items like this one came from a Capitol Hill staffer who witnessed the incident. It is unlikely the cafe worker took the time to call up the newspaper himself and tell on Souder. I can only imagine the phone call which took place between the worker's boss and Congressman Souder's office following the publication of the sandwich incident.