Politicians, the elite problem solvers we entrust make tough decisions, are still capable of childishly stupid behavior.
These photos from legislatures around the world remind us that even in the trappings of democracy, when words ultimately fail, policymakers can still throw a punch, tackle a colleague, or start a pillow fight.
Pro-democracy lawmaker Leung Kwok-hung throws a cloud-shaped cushion at Hong Kong financial secretary John Tsang to demand a universal retirement protection scheme, during the annual budget report at the Legislative Council in Hong Kong in 2013. Members of the Somali parliament fight after a majority voted against the speaker of the parliament Sharif Hassan Sheikh Aden in Mogadishu, in 2011. Bolivian opposition congressman Fernando Rodriguez battles with an unidentified indigenous deputy of president Evo Morales’ party in La Paz, in 2009. Turkey’s ruling AK Party lawmaker Muhittin Aksak (at right) and main opposition Republican People’s Party lawmaker Mahmut Tanal (left) scuffle during a debate at the parliament in Ankara in 2012. Lawmakers remove a Uri Party lawmaker (center), who backs from the speaker’s seat in parliament in Seoul in 2004. Democratic Progressive Party legislators scuffle with Nationalist Party legislators (top) at the Legislative Yuan in Taipei in in 2010.
Members of parliament scuffle with colleagues elected from their party but who later refused to join a faction, at the first session of newly-elected Ukrainian parliament in Kiev in 2012. Opposition lawmakers crowd around Masahisa Sato, a senior ruling party lawmaker, at an upper house special committee session on security-related legislation at the parliament in Tokyo in 2015.
Rada deputy Oleg Barna removes Ukrainian prime minister Arseny Yatseniuk from the tribune, after presenting him a bouquet of roses, during the parliament session in Kiev in 2015.