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GOP candidate refutes ‘body slam’ story [Audio and Full Statement] – Update: Fox News says Greg slammed Ben

A reporter claimed that he was body slammed by Montana House candidate Greg Gianforte on Wednesday, just one day ahead of the Montana special election.

Ben Jacobs, a liberal reporter from the Guardian entered Ginaforte’s private office uninvited while the candidate was in a separate interview with Fox News reporters (their account below.) Jacobs began badgering Greg with questions despite being asked to leave. What happened next is at the center of a new controversy.

Jacobs insists that he was body slammed.

“I wasn’t expecting detailed policy,” Jacobs said in an MSNBC interview. “But then again I also wasn’t expecting to be body slammed.”

Gianforte’s Campaign Responds

Gianforte’s campaign released a statement with a tick-by-tick account of the encounter and it doesn’t exactly jive with the reporter’s version of events.

“The Guardian’s Ben Jacobs entered the office without permission,” the statement reads. “[Jacobs] aggressively shoved a recorder in Greg’s face and began asking badgering questions.” When the reporter declined to take the phone out of Gianforte’s face and leave the office, Greg tried to Grab the phone pushed in his face. That’s when things went sideways. “Jacobs grabbed Greg’s wrist and spun” taking them both off-balance and to the ground.

“It’s unfortunate that this aggressive behavior from a liberal journalist created this scene,” wrote campaign spokesman Shane Scanion.

Audio of the encounter has been released but does little to clear up which account is most accurate.

Fox News Reporters in the Room Recount What They Saw

Was the reporter body slammed or did Mr. Jacobs create a situation intended to harm the reputation of a Republican candidate the night before the election? Fox News has added the eyewitness report from their journalists in the room that supports Jacobs and is damning for Ginaforte [emphasis mine]:

During that conversation, another man — who we now know is Ben Jacobs of The Guardian — walked into the room with a voice recorder, put it up to Gianforte’s face and began asking if him if he had a response to the newly released Congressional Budget Office report on the American Health Care Act. Gianforte told him he would get to him later. Jacobs persisted with his question. Gianforte told him to talk to his press guy, Shane Scanlon.

At that point, Gianforte grabbed Jacobs by the neck with both hands and slammed him into the ground behind him. Faith, Keith and I watched in disbelief as Gianforte then began punching the man, as he moved on top the reporter and began yelling something to the effect of “I’m sick and tired of this!”

There is no way this goes well for the Republican and will likely result in the loss of a House seat.

Editor’s Note: This story was updated to add the eyewitness accounts of the Fox News reporters who were in the room at the time of the incident.

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Rich Mitchell

Rich Mitchell is the editor-in-chief of Conservative Daily News and the president of Bald Eagle Media, LLC. His posts may contain opinions that are his own and are not necessarily shared by Bald Eagle Media, CDN, staff or .. much of anyone else. Find him on twitter, facebook and

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  1. No one can tell me this was not a set up. Ben Jacobs of the Guardian has been dogging Greg Gianforte since his campaign for Governor. That they know each other at least on that basis sets this event into a slightly different light. Greg is not a man to act rashly. In fact his motto is four or five yards at a time (in football vernacular). He is an Engineer and Engineers typically operate that way. (I’ve worked with plenty to know this).

    On the other hand Ben has acted as the aggressor in typical paparazzi fashion. It is unimaginable that Greg would have sought him out for any reason. Ben intruded into a private office, into a closed interview, and into Greg’s private space – literally his face – and even after being told twice to wait his turn – pressed his intrusion to the point that Greg lost his temper. All human beings revert to Natural law when the circumstances go beyond what is expected of a fellow human being to respect our individual rights! We each have the right to protect our lives and our property (property includes our personal space); to whatever degree necessary!

    That being the case it is very difficult to believe Greg jumped on Ben as described by the Fox news reporters. Greg has been charged with “misnomer assault” which means Ben was not seriously injured! The Fox account (and note that the 3 “witnesses” did not release their version until about 3 hours later – had plenty of time to get their story lined up regardless of what they each told the sheriff – all that matters is how it can affect the voting today) does not jive with the charges. Were there marks on Jacobs neck? Was there any evidence of punching. The audio seems rather brief for all of that to have happened nor does it offer any audio evidence such as Ben being punched or crying out for help!!!

    I believe the Candidate’s account! I believe this is an instance where the “controlled opposition” (those people who act like our friends but will turn on us in strategic situations to SWAY OUR OPINION on behalf of the Globalist agenda) has shown it’s true nature ONCE AGAIN!

    As far as I’m concerned Greg Gianforte was defending his Property from an intruder from what he (and I) perceive as a REAL THREAT.

    The Mainstream Media continues to attack my President. they Attack those people I choose to represent me. They attack the Virtues and Values My Country was founded upon. THEY ATTACK ME -and I take it personally. I that THIS incident personally. It is both desperate and CONNIVING of them! That includes Fox News the most deceitful of all because they ACT like my friend but turn on me with LIES to sway me to go along with the Globalist agenda, after all! Rupert Murdock is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations so I expect nothing less of FOX than this pack of lies!

    It is the goal of the left and their Propaganda machine to drive up tension and anger to the point that they create a state of violence because in this violence and disruption they are able to manipulate our society to THEIR intentions! They know they are LIARS. Logic and facts are of no use to them. WE MUST STAND AGAINST THEM!

    Now I go to vote with IMPUNITY!

    1. Would give you a hundred thumbs up (if I could). The Fox reporter, Acuna, was reportedly on Laura Ingraham’s radio show today and said she “embellished” her first story, tried to retract the previous spin. Fake News fits in here somewhere. I’m going to dig a hole and play solitaire for the next 8 years.

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