Ben Jacobs, political reporter for international news publication The Guardian, has claimed that he was body slammed by Montana Republican candidate for Congress Greg Gianforte. The alleged assault, which broke Jacobs' glasses, occurred during an interview with Gianforte about the Republican healthcare plan. Jacobs has reported the incident to the police and the Gallatin County sheriff’s office is investigating.

The Guardian's full story and accompanying audio of the incident can be found here.

Shane Scanlon, spokesperson for Gianforte, issued a statement after the incident came to light, stating:

Tonight, as Greg was giving a separate interview in a private office, The Guardian’s Ben 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. It’s unfortunate that this aggressive behavior from a liberal journalist created this scene at our campaign volunteer BBQ.

We will be updating this story if further developments come to light, but regardless of your party affiliation, it is sure to give some pause on this, the eve of the special election.


This story was written by Peter Christian at WPG's sister station KGVO in Missoula, MT. The Townsquare News Network reports Gianforte spent several years living in New Jersey and was educated at Stevens Institute of Technology in Hoboken. He started his career at Bell Labs in Berkeley Heights.

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