I listened to that audio clip of the Ben Jacobs/Greg Gianforte incident, from Wednesday, May 23rd, several more times. Gianforte sounds calm and polite when he tells Jacobs to “please” speak to Shane. Then there’s scuffling noises, which I assume Jacobs’ phone picked up. Then, after a few seconds, Gianforte yells that he’s sick and tired of “you guys” and yells “the last time you came in here you did the same thing” and then he tells Jacobs to “get the hell out of here”.
I wonder what Jacobs did with his cell phone and what Gianforte was referring to as “the same thing” and I wonder what those scuffling sounds are that precede Gianforte yelling.
Without a doubt Gianforte should not have body-slammed a reporter, but what bothers me is within a few hours the media generated a spin cycle on Twitter with this incident based on Jacobs’ tweets and an audio video.
Gianforte was tried and convicted in the court of public opinion based on a tweetstorm among the media. These tweetstorms are now an integral part of how journalists generate their news stories – retweeting each other’s tweets, not by hitting the pavement independently investigating stories or asking questions.
The assault charge resulted from witness statements and I wonder if Alicia Acuna is one of the key eye-witnesses. She’s now the liberal media’s only FOX News heroine, with her story the next day, May 24th, relating that Gianforte grabbed Jacobs by the neck. In that story, it appears that FOX news used Jacobs’ audio recording. Later, that day Acuna walked back much of her account in an interview with Laura Ingraham.
Gianforte came out and apologized for his conduct.
The fall-out or perhaps partisan political fault lines were drawn in this incident, where the media and Dems sided up to condemn, not only Gianforte, but many tried to blame Trump for Gianforte’s behavior. Some floated that Gianforte should not be seated in Congress with an assault charge pending. On the right, some pundits cheered Gianforte’s body-slamming a reporter and dismissed the incident as the reporter had it coming.
My issue is I still am not sure about the facts of what exactly happened and I find that judging based on one side’s audio clip from a cell-phone, that could easily be altered, a reporter who walked back much of her lurid account and a media tweetstorm seems a poor way to do investigative journalism. And once again, Acuna recounted that she, a field producer and a photographer had arrived early to set-up, but not a single photo or video of the incident from a professional photographer???
Gianforte will probably try to settle this assault charge quickly, but this incident will follow him for his political future.
Jacobs is a now a media darling among journalists and “victim” the Left will throw out at every opportunity to paint Republicans as barbarians.
This is justice served cold via lazy journalists who make and destroy people with spin cycles they create on Twitter.