Skip to Content
Everything Else

Duct tape-wielding man in cowboy hat hysterically interrupts Tulsa mayoral debate…

1:12 PM EDT on June 2, 2016

paul tay tulsa mayor debate

Apparently Tulsa is electing a new mayor.

We know this because Rogers State University held a debate last night between incumbent Tulsa mayor Dewey Bartlett and his main challenger, City Councilman G.T. Bynum.

Everything in the debate was going along smoothly until some guy named Paul Tay jumped in front of the cameras demanding to be heard. Paul Tay is kind of like the Biker Fox of Tulsa politics. The only difference is that instead of riding around on a bicycle and chasing raccoons, he wears a cowboy hat and runs for mayor every four years.

If you only do one thing today make sure you watch this video. It's the only time you'll hear "Come on, Matt Damon, get me out of here" in a political debate:

That's hysterical. I know Mayor Cornett isn't a big fan of debates, but the next time he's up for re-election, can he schedule a debate with Ed Shadid on the off-chance that Steve Hunt will show up wearing a cowboy hat and demand to be heard while hiding a roll of duct tape behind is back?

Seriously, what was up with that?

duct tape

That's duct tape... right? I guess it could be something else, but I'm going to pretend I work in the OKC TV news media and just go with it. Maybe he carries it around because duct tape can fix anything, including Tulsa's problems.

Anyway, the funniest part had to be when the terrified moderator asked for security, and all of a sudden a very confused Gene from Breaking Bad arrived to save day. This, of course, prompted Paul to say "Come on, Matt Damon, get me out of here." In case you missed it, it occurs about the 1:15 mark.

Speaking of that, have you ever seen a more tentative, unsure security guard in your life? That's probably because the Gene / Matt Damon impersonator isn't a security guard at all, but simply a cameraman from Sweden. Well, at least he is according to this profile in the hard-hitting Tulsa Frontier:

After video from last night’s mayoral debate went viral, it was the question everyone was asking.

No, not “Who is Paul Tay?” Anyone who has lived in Tulsa for any amount of time gets used to the wild, attention-grabbing antics of the perennial mayoral candidate. (Though, for the record, he says he’s quite serious about wanting to be mayor.)

The real question was: Who’s the Matt Damon lookalike that Paul Tay calls out as he’s about to be escorted off stage?

“C’mon, Matt Damon — get me out of here!”’

His name is Lars Lindtner, he’s Norwegian (of course) and works as a cameraman occasionally for RSU-TV, because the 23-year-old just graduated from college at Rogers State University. He came to the United States to play college soccer and hopes to land a job in media and communications

[...]

Lindtner said he was confused when Tay first walked into his camera view.

“At first when he walked up on stage there I thought it was maybe part of the show — like he was maybe a sponsor or something,” Lindtner said. “Then he started yelling at our crew, (general manager) and moderator — it didn’t seem right.”

The situation escalated inside TCC’s downtown studio, and Lindtner and another cameraman left their cameras to intervene.

“I got kind of concerned, so me and my coworkers just left our cameras and just stood by in case punches were thrown,” he said.

Eventually, Tay yelled: “C’mon, Matt Damon — get me out of here!”’

I don't know about you, but I'd pay $30 a month for articles like that!

Anyway, the only other question I have about this fiasco is who Dewey Bartlett was calling on his phone. Did anyone catch that?

tulsa debate

"Yes. I'll pick up some milk on the way home. Anything else? Oh... okay... uh huh... Interesting... Yeah... Yeah.. Anyway, we'll need to talk about that when I get home. There's a man here wearing a cowboy hat and holding duct tape and he's about to get in a fight with Matt Damon or Gene from Breaking Bad. He looks like a cross between the two, really."

Stay in touch

Sign up for our free newsletter