Montana Special Election By the Numbers

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The special election was for Montana's lone House seat, which was vacated when former GOP Rep. Ryan Zinke was tapped to be Trump's Interior secretary. Ben Jacobs, a reporter for the Guardian, asked the Republican candidate a question about the polarizing healthcare bill traveling through the Senate right now; Gianforte responded by "bodyslamming" Jacobs and screaming that he was sick and exhausted of questions.

Jacobs captured audio of the encounter which began with Jacobs asking Gianforte about the congressional health care bill.

But Fox News reporter Alicia Acuna, who as in the room waiting for a pre-arranged interview with Gianforte, posted a story two hours later, contradicting that version and saying she witnessed Gianforte grab Jacobs and later start punching him.

Gianforte campaign's initial response to the Thursday assault wasn't to apologize, but to say that Jacobs was at fault.

Montana Republican Greg Gianforte (r.) caused national uproar when he was arrested for getting physical with Guardian reporter Ben Jacobs on the eve of the state's special election.

But after he was declared the victor, Gianforte apologized for the attack.

"And when you make a mistake", he continued, "you have to own up to it". "That's the Montana way". I should not have responded in the way that I did and for that I am sorry.


Mr Gianforte had 50.4 per cent of the vote to Mr Quist's 43.9 per cent, according to the Associated Press, with 98 per cent of precincts reporting.

Already, Montana's weird special election and Gianforte's win are being cast as a referendum on events in Washington and a projection of what's to come.

"Donald Trump is his model", Pelosi said.

"Gianforte grabbed Jacobs by the neck with both hands and slammed him into the ground behind him". Greg Gianforte celebrates his win over Rob Quist for the open congressional seat at the Hilton Garden Inn, Thursday night, May 25, 2017, in Bozeman, Mont.

Even if he were found guilty and served the maximum sentence-six months in Montana-Gianforte could still serve in Congress.

"Wow, I guess the GOP really has become the party of Donald Trump", said Meyers, showing a clip of Trump body-slamming WWE CEO Vince McMahon. Party strategists argued that Gianforte's margin in a state where Trump swamped Hillary Clinton by 20 points bodes well for dozens of other districts where the parties are more evenly matched.

Trump and Vice President Mike Pence recorded robocalls urging voters not to let the Democrats take the seat. Nearly 70 percent of votes were cast early in the race.

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