Montana’s GOP House Candidate Charged with Assault
The Republican candidate in a hotly contested special House election in Montana was charged with assaulting a journalist on Wednesday at what was to be a final rally in Bozeman on the eve of the vote. The attack brought police officers to the event and sent the reporter to the hospital for X-rays.
In a statement late Wednesday, the office of the Gallatin County sheriff, Brian Gootkin, said there was enough evidence to charge the candidate, Greg Gianforte, with misdemeanor assault. Mr. Gianforte, the Republican candidate for the state’s lone House seat, is scheduled to appear in court before June 7.
Members of a Fox News television crew witnessed the encounter, and in a firsthand account posted on the network’s website, one of the Fox journalists described Mr. Gianforte as “punching the reporter.”
“As Gianforte moved on top of Jacobs, he began yelling something to the effect of, ‘I’m sick and tired of this!'” according to the Fox News account.
Mr. Jacobs said Mr. Gianforte became agitated when asked about the Congressional Budget Office’s new fiscal assessment of the legislation that House Republicans have passed to repeal the Affordable Care Act.
Audio of the alleged attack can be found at the link.
The special election is today, although due to early voting, this incident may not have as much effect on the outcome as one might expect.