Montana Green Party Denounces Own Candidate Over ‘Bigoted Remarks’
The Montana Green Party is denouncing a candidate running under the Green Party banner over what it views as 'bigoted remarks.' According to party Coordinator Danielle Breck, Montana House Candidate John Gibney (HD 85) from Hamilton is being denounced for comments he made at a rally over the issue of refugee ressettlement in Missoula in 2016.
"We hold a strong pro-immigration stance," Breck said. "One of our key values is social equality, that all peoples, race, religion, colors, creeds are equal and should be treated as such. His remarks blatantly didn't stand with Green Party values, so we thought it was important to give him the opportunity to denounce those remarks and apologize for them."
Gibney was quoted by Missoulian reporter Kim Briggeman at the time as saying "...our black Muslim president is trying to bring this country down. And he’s doing a very good job with all of his lapdogs.” Breck says she confronted Gibney about the quote and got a response.
"He called me up and actually defended his remarks and said that president Obama is a black Muslim, so that wasn't bigoted and things of that nature," Breck said. "So we made it very clear that if he was going to stick to that behavior and those belief systems and he wasn't going to be willing to denounce those remarks, that we were going to have to denounce him as a candidate."
Political parties in Montana have a tough time controlling who runs under their party banner and Breck says the Green Party likely wouldn't have the time or money to go to court over the issue. The Green Party is currently searching for a write-in candidate to endorse in hopes of pruning Gibney out of the race in the primary.