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Montana Republican Congressional Candidate Allegedly Assaults Newspaper Reporter

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< source media=“(min-width: 768px)and(

max-width: 999px )”srcset=”–1280×720.nbcnews-ux-800-440.jpg”> Press reporter: Montana GOP candidate ‘body knocked me’autoplay autoplay A press reporter for The Guardian newspaper was” body knocked “to the flooring Wednesday by Greg Gianforte, the

Republican candidate in Thursday’s unique election for Montana’s open U.S. House seat, the press reporter and numerous witnesses said. The

press reporter, Ben Jacobs, was covering an event in Bozeman and

tweeted the encounter at about 7 p.m. ET. Greg Gianforte just body slammed me and broke my glasses– Ben Jacobs(@Bencjacobs)

May 24, 2017 Jacobs informed MSNBC’s Chris Hayes that he was attempting to ask Gianforte about the Congressional Budget plan Office’s financial analysis of the republican healthcare plan when “the next thing I know, I’m being body-slammed.”

“He’s on top of me. My glasses are broken,” Jacobs stated. “It’s the strangest thing that’s taken place in my whole life reporting.”

Jacobs said he fell on his elbow and was waiting to be X-rayed.

In audio of the confrontation published to YouTube by The Guardian, a voice said to be Gianforte’s asks Jacks to speak with an aide. Loud crashing noises can be heard.

“I’m ill and exhausted of you people! The last time you can be found in here you did the same thing. Get the hell out of here! Get the hell out of here!

“The last person did the same thing. You with The Guardian?” the guy asks.

Jacobs responds: “Yes, and you simply broke my glasses. … You just body-slammed me and broke my glasses.”

“Get the hell out of here,” reacts the voice stated to be Gianforte’s.

An unidentified male was transferred to a medical facility, authorities told NBC News. The Hyalite Rural Fire District confirmed that it had been contacted us to the scene to support examination of an assault at about 5:15 p.m. (7:15 p.m. ET).

Republican congressional prospect Greg Gianforte talks with supporters during a project occasion Wednesday in Missoula, Montana. Justin Sullivan/ Getty Images

Asked about the report throughout a project occasion in Missoula, a representative for Gianforte’s Democratic challenger, singer/songwriter Rob Quist, informed NBC News he at first believed it was a joke. Quist later on stated he would leave the event to law enforcement.

Alexis Levinson, a press reporter for BuzzFeed News, who was also at the event, tweeted that Jacobs had walked into a space where a local television team was set up for an interview with Gianforte when “all of a sudden I heard a huge crash and saw Ben’s feet fly in the air as he struck the floor.”

Suddenly I heard a giant crash and saw Ben’s feet fly in the air as he hit the floor

— Alexis Levinson (@alexis_levinson)

Might 24, 2017 Levinson, who was standing outside the door of the room where the assault apparently took place, later told MSNBC that she heard upset shouting in a voice that seemed like Gianforte’s.

Whitney Bermes, a press reporter for The Bozeman Chronicle, tweeted a photo of Gianforte in the front seat of an unmarked Jeep talking with a medical responder.

— Whitney Bermes (@wabermes)

Might 24, 2017 Gianforte, 55, a technology entrepreneur who unsuccessfully ran for governor in 2015, later left the occasion early in the Jeep without speaking, reporters on the scene said.

Aides to Gianforte and agents of the state Republican Party didn’t right away react to multiple ask for comment from NBC News.

Montana has just one representative in the United States House. The special election was made necessary needed after President Donald Trump selected Rep. Ryan Zinke to be interior secretary.

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