Wednesday, 28 June, 2017

Republican candidate charged with assault on reporter wins special Montana election

Polls Close in Montana's Suddenly Famous Special Congressional Election Polls Closing in Montana Special Election
Erik Tate | 09 June, 2017, 09:33

In the quest for Interior Secretary Ryan Zenke's vacated seat, Gianforte captured an estimated 50.3% of the vote with Democrat Rob Quist bringing in 43.9%. Approached by Ben Jacobs of The Guardian and pressed about the Congressional Budget Office score for the American Health Care Act, Gianforte reportedly grabbed Jacobs by the throat and slammed him to the ground, breaking his glasses.

Gallatin County Sheriff Brian Gootkin said that his office's investigation found there was "probable cause to issue a citation to Greg Gianforte for misdemeanor assault".

"And when you make a mistake", he continued, "you have to own up to it". "That's the Montana way". Last night I did make a mistake.

Saying he was "not proud" of his behavior, he added, "I should not have responded the way I did, for that I'm sorry". Since the incident with Jacobs, Gianforte has been charged with assault. That was before Wednesday's altercation with Ben Jacobs, a political reporter for Britain's The Guardian. Not only does Montana lean very heavily on the Republican side - President Trump took the state by twenty points - but thanks to their high early voting turnout, over half the votes were cast before the altercation.

That is not the person I am or the leader I will be for Montana.

Gianforte dropped out of sight after he was cited by police and ignored calls on Thursday by national Republicans for him to apologise to the reporter.

"I'm still sort of flabbergasted, not just by the assault, but by the statement that was put out last night which was in some ways far worse than the assault", Jacobs told CNN Thursday evening.

Trump, EPA chief meet ahead of decision on climate change
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has said it was "absolutely essential" that the Paris climate agreement be implemented. In announcing his decision, Trump said he was "elected to represent the citizens of Pittsburgh, not Paris".

The special election for Montana's lone House seat is Thursday.

"Great win in Montana", Trump told reporters as he arrived in Italy for a meeting of the G-7 nations as part of his first foreign trip as president, The Hill reports.

Other witnesses corroborated Jacobs's version of events - including a crew from Fox News, the most-viewed U.S. cable news channel and a favorite of conservatives.

Greg Gianforte campaigning with Donald Trump Jr.

Instead, the win reaffirmed Montana's support for Mr Trump's young presidency in a conservative-leaning state that voted overwhelmingly for him in November.

"It is unsettling on many levels that Greg Gianforte physically assaulted a journalist and then lied, refusing to take responsibility for his actions".

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