GOP Lawmaker Defends Gianforte’s Assault On A Reporter: He ‘Deserved It’
House Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-Cali.) defended Greg Gianforte, Republican candidate for Montana’s House seat, after he assaulted a reported for asking a question about the party’s healthcare bill the night before.
Hunter did say that attacking a reporter is inappropriate, but added that it’s okay to do if they deserved it.
“It’s not appropriate behavior,” Hunter said, before adding, “Unless the reporter deserved it.”
Hunter went on to say that he wasn’t sure of the details of the incident, that he only read the headlines.
“I did not read the story. I just saw the headline,” he said.
Gianforte was charged with a misdemeanor assault after allegedly body slamming Guardian reporter Ben Jacobs.
The Guardian posted an audio of when the incident happen. “I’m sick and tired of you guys,” Gianforte can be heard yelling. “The last guy who came in here you did the same thing. Get the hell out of here!”
After the incident Jacobs called the police and went to the hospital to get checked out.
In an attempt to save Gianforte from getting charged, his campaign offered a contradicting statement that doesn’t line up with what can be heard in the audio.
“Jacobs entered the office without permission, aggressively shoved a recorder in Greg’s face, and began asking badgering questions. Jacobs was asked to leave. After asking Jacobs to lower the recorder, Jacobs declined. Greg then attempted to grab the phone that was pushed in his face. Jacobs grabbed Greg’s wrist, and spun away from Greg, pushing them both to the ground,” Gianforte spokesman Shane Scanlon said in a statement.