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Greg Gianforte wins special election in Montana

Greg Gianforte wins special election in Montana

Republican Greg Gianforte has won a special election for Montana's at-large House of Representatives seat, over Democrat Rob Quist, despite assaulting Guardian reporter Ben Jacobs on the eve of the election.

Three local newspapers have since withdrawn their endorsements for Gianforte.

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.

On Wednesday, Greg Gianforte, a San Diego-born Republican running in a special election for Montana's one House seat, was charged with misdemeanor assault.

"No matter what ends up happening, the actions of Gianforte don't reflect the values of Montana or the values of its people", Bullock said.

But a 45-second recording that Jacobs released does not contain a request from Gianforte that Jacobs lower his phone.

"Last night I learned a lesson...and when you make a mistake you have to own up to it, that's the Montana way", he said. I need to share something from my heart here, and I just ask you to bear with me.

House Speaker Paul Ryan called on Gianforte to apologize, but he said that it was up to Montana voters to decide whether he was fit for office.

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But at least 260,000 votes had been cast absentee before the incident occurred, and Republicans said Thursday they sensed that the altercation hadn't made much difference - even in the face of intense national, state and even worldwide coverage of the election and alleged assault.

Jacobs told ABC's "Good Morning America" that he was doing his job and asking Gianforte about his reaction to the Congressional Budget Office review of the House health care plan as part of covering Thursday's special election. Gianforte, who was audibly irritated, reportedly body slammed the reporter. "[We] watched in disbelief as Gianforte then began punching the reporter".

His camp blamed the incident on Jacobs who they said had "aggressively shoved" his iPhone in front of the candidate's face for an unscheduled interview.

The ballroom at the hotel is decorated with balloons and signs in support of Gianforte.

Greg Gianforte is going to Washington! Twice it seemed someone picked up then immediately hung up. He said of the politician's account: "The only thing that is factually correct.is my name and place of employment". "The nature of the injuries did not meet the statutory elements of felony assault", Sheriff Brian Gootkin said.

Quist hasn't commented on the incident.

Gianforte will get an opportunity to "work toward righting this wrong" when he appears in court for his misdemeanor summons on June 7th, unless he arranges a new date.

Since Republicans in Congress passed a repeal of Obamacare earlier this month, Quist had doubled down on his embrace of health care as a cornerstone of the campaign. He apologized Thursday for not revealing the donation at a previous news conference.


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