Republican Greg Gianforte wins Montana special election, CNN projects

Cheryl Sanders
May 27, 2017

Greg Gianforte was able to weather a political firestorm and cruised to a victory over Rob Quist in Montana's U.S. House Special election.

In addition, Gianforte may be facing a crime, but it doesn't appear to have made him lose support.

In the November 10, 2014 U.S. House election, 325 votes, amounting to less than 1.25 percent, separated Zinke, who won the county and the state, from John Lewis, a Democrat.

Montana Sen. Steve Daines (R-MT) tweeted, "Greg Gianforte needs to apologize", on Thursday.

FiveThirtyEight's Nate Silver added shortly after midnight, "A night where Democrats are losing Montana by "only" 6 or 7 points is consistent with the sort of map you might see if Democrats were either taking over the House, or coming pretty close to it".


Jacobs previously authored a piece on Gianforte exposing his business ties to Russian companies that have been sanctioned by the United States.

Gianforte was charged with assaulting Guardian reporter Ben Jacobs Wednesday after Jacobs asked him about the GOP healthcare bill and the candidate allegedly tossed him on the floor. "I do not condone violence in any way", he said.

After describing the Gianforte incident, Meyers said, "The GOP health care plan is so bad, Republicans would rather body-slam reporters than answer a question about it".

Stier said he thinks both Gianforte and the reporter, Ben Jacobs, should apologize to each other.

The Guardian is a British liberal newspaper that opened a United States edition 10 years ago. You have made hundreds of thousands of phone calls.


But the incident came after an estimated two-thirds had already cast their ballots by mail - and none were allowed to change their votes after news of the confrontation broke.

Quist has so far said little about his opponent's physical altercation.

A reporter from the Guardian accused the tech millionaire of slamming him to the ground and breaking his glasses in an altercation at Gianforte's campaign headquarters in Bozeman on Wednesday afternoon. The DCCC, House Democrats' campaign arm, released an ominous digital ad with Gianforte's face in black-and-white and the tagline, "Charged with a crime". Twice it sounded like someone picked up then immediately hung up. "As Gianforte moved on top of Jacobs, he began yelling something to the effect of, 'I'm sick and exhausted of this!'" Gianforte shouts. Gianforte's campaign later issued a statement, seemingly contradicted by the audio, saying it was Jacobs who had been "aggressive". "Get the hell out of here!" the man yells.

"Greg Gianforte must immediately withdraw his candidacy after his alleged violent assault of an innocent journalist", spokesman Tyler Law said in a statement.

Montana has traditionally been a "Red State" in presidential elections, but it's not impossible for Democrats to win in the state.


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