We will never know for sure whether Greg Gianforte’s physical aggression (it seems to have fallen far short of an assault), one day before the special election to become Montana’s congressperson, helped or hurt his vote total. What we do know, however, is that Mr. Gianforte won relatively comfortably, beating Democrat Rob Quist by about 6% in what was expected to be a very tight election.
Gianforte has apologized to reporter Ben Jacobs for throwing him down and breaking his glasses. I don’t know whether Mr. Jacobs has accepted the apology. I doubt that it matters.
The bottom line? Democrats expended a great deal of money and effort to flip what normally would be a safe Republican seat to the Democrat side (though a lot of it came late in the race). It didn’t work.
I will be very interested to see how media present this. As a win for Republicans because, well, because they won? Or as a win for Democrats, because the margin was less than what Trump won Montana by.
I have a feeling I already know the answer to that one.