Authorities plane to interview Greg Gianforte

Bryan Strickland
May 25, 2017

There are plenty of parochial issues, including land access and state taxes, framing the race between Republican Greg Gianforte, a billionaire former technology executive who frames himself as an outsider businessman similar to President Donald Trump, and Democrat Rob Quist, a folk musician and political novice. Actress Alyssa Milano came to Montana to drive voters to the polls recently, similar to what she did in Georgia earlier this spring.

Gianforte told him he would get to him later.

There isn't enough evidence that the candidates are neck-and-neck to justify a Tossup rating, but there is enough uncertainty with special election turnout, and with previous special election races as a backdrop, for us to change our Inside Elections rating of the Montana race from Likely Republican to Tilts Republican. Greg then attempted to grab the phone that was pushed in his face.

"Yeah, but there's not going to be time", says Jacobs.

Gianforte asked Jacobs to lower a phone that was being used as an audio recorder, then tried to grab it, the campaign said in a statement.

And for a while the battle between Republican business owner Greg Gianforte and Democratic bluegrass singer Rob Quist revolved around attacks on each other's personality and foibles (Gianforte's carpetbagger status and wealth, Quist's personal finances), and not on any big national themes.

"I'm a one topic guy, and that's the topic", the 39-year-old Bozeman resident said.

Campaign spending ahead of Thursday's special election to fill Montana's only U.S. House seat continued to surge deep into record territory, with at least $17 million flowing into the race from the campaigns and outside groups hoping to influence the nationally watched contest. This campaign is a different animal in a state known for them: Bullock is an experienced statewide officeholder, and, Gianforte's House challenger, has never run for elected office. Pence said, adding that Gianforte would help "make America great again".

The special election will be held Thursday and both Republicans and Democrats say the gap between the two candidates is narrowing, according to the website.

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"The fact that we're talking about Montana - a super red seat - is wonderful", said John Lapp, who led the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee for the 2006 cycle. The Guardian reported that a Gianforte spokesman said the candidate did not oversee his portfolio daily, but looked at its "overall performance".

The Gallatin County Sheriffs Office is now investigating allegations of an assault involving Greg Gianforte.

Requests for comment went unanswered Wednesday night from House Speaker Paul Ryan and the National Republican Congressional Committee.

Alexis Levinson, a reporter for Buzzfeed News, told MSNBC that she had given a statement to the sheriff's office.

The newspaper posted an audio recording that captured the tension.

After loud scuffling noises are heard, Gianforte yells, "Get the hell out of here" and demands to know if Jacobs is with the Guardian.

The attention is being met here with a mix of excitement, curiosity, frustration and exhaustion, depending on who you ask.

The pre-recorded calls are illegal in Montana, though it isn't clear if local authorities have jurisdiction over a federal election.

Strategists on both sides of the aisle agree that Gianforte won't come close to President Donald Trump's 20-point victory last fall.

Other reports by GlobalViralNews

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