The F.C.C. held a hearing on Thursday about net neutrality rules and when it ended, the commissioners fielded questions from reporters in an impromptu news conference. Mr. Donnelly said he wanted to discuss a different topic privately. As he waited in a hallway for one of the commissioners, he spotted Commissioner Michael P. O’Rielly.
“Commissioner, I have a question,” Mr. Donnelly said he began to say, but that was as far as he got before two security officials in plain clothes turned their backs on him, stood together and in a vise move pressed him into a wall for about 10 seconds as the commissioner walked by.
Mr. Donnelly said he is 165 pounds and 5 feet 10 inches tall. By his estimate, each of the security officials weighed at least 20 pounds more and were about the same height or slightly taller. Mr. Donnelly, 56, said he was not hurt but was incredulous about what happened.
“I tried to ask a question of a public official in a taxpayer-funded public building, and I did so politely, and I was treated as if I had thrown food at a commissioner,” he said. “There was absolutely nothing in my countenance that could be perceived as a threat. I think they interpreted that I was going to ask a question, and they were determined to stop it.”
He was holding a recorder, pen and pad and was wearing a press pass, he said.
Mr. Donnelly said he asked the men: “Really? You’ve got to block me like that?” He said one of the security officials, whom he identified as Frederick W. Bucher, asked why he didn’t ask his question at the news conference.
The identity of the other man was unclear. Mr. Bucher works for the Security Administration of the F.C.C., according to public records. A request to the commission for an interview with him went unanswered.
Mr. Donnelly said the article he was developing was unrelated to the hearing, and he…