Comedian Ariel Elias chugs beer thrown by heckler demanding to know if she voted for Donald Trump

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POINT PLEASANT, N.J. — Comedian Ariel Elias said her hands were shaking, but she didn’t show it, when someone in the audience at a New Jersey club threw a beer at her over the weekend. 

Viral video of the incident shows Elias picked up the can, chugged the beer and the audience roared with applause.

CBS2’s Ali Bauman spoke with Elias about how she stayed cool to handle the politically-charged heckler. 

“Were you as calm, cool and collected on the inside as you seemed on the outside?” asked Bauman. 

“No, I had so much adrenaline and was trying to breathe, take a beat, not let anybody see that my hands were shaking,” said Elias. 

Elias was doing standup on Saturday night at Uncle Vinnie’s Comedy Club in Point Pleasant Beach. As she often does, she asked if anyone in the crowd had a question for her.

One woman did. 

“Did you vote for Donald Trump?” the woman asked. 

“Did I vote for Donald Trump? What do you think,” Elias replied. 

Elias tried changing the subject, but the heckler persisted. 

“I wasn’t talking about politics at all. So it was just like, ‘Oh, you’re clearly looking for a fight,'” Elias told CBS2. 

The woman in the audience said, “I can just tell by your jokes, you voted for Biden.”

“Alright. I can tell by the fact that you’re still talking when nobody wants you to that you voted for Trump,” Elias told the woman. 

Dino Ibelli, the club’s owner, then walked over to the heckler. 

“I said ‘Listen, it’s not about you anymore. You need to keep it quiet or you need to leave,'” said Ibelli. 

The woman walked out. Then, according to Ibelli, a man she was with threw the closed beer can and ran out. 

Ibelli said the guy who threw the beer was sitting all the way in the back, which means he threw it over the heads of people in the audience before nearly striking Elias. 

There was not a bouncer at the club that night, but Ibelli said a bouncer would not have changed much. 

“If somebody’s throwing something, what do you do?” said Ibelli. “It’s not like the Chris Rock situation and Will Smith, and you see the 30 second walk to the stage.” 

Elias said she never worried about physical violence on stage in her 11 years as a standup comic before this. 

“Audiences are so much drunker than they used to be, I think. I think COVID really taught people how to drink,” said Elias. “We all bottled up so much for so long and couldn’t interact with each other and we had to bury all of these emotions, all of these feelings and all of this trauma. So, now people are acting on impulse.” 

Ibelli filed a police report and plans to press charges. Elias is ready to get back on stage. 

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