A Republican candidate in Maine has apologized after calling teen activists and Parkland shooting survivors names on Twitter.
According to the Associated Press, Leslie Gibson, the only declared House candidate for Maine’s 57th District, has shut down his personal Twitter account and has made his candidacy account private after he tweeted that 18-year-old Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School student Emma González is a “skinhead lesbian,” and that student David Hogg is a “bald faced liar.”
“There is nothing about this skinhead lesbian that impresses me and there is nothing that she has to say unless you’re a frothing at the mouth moonbat,” Gibson wrote about González in a now-deleted tweet responding to an article featuring her photo. Gonzalez has previously wrote she is Cuban and bisexual in a piece for Harper’s Bazaar.
In a separate tweet, Gibson also said that González wasn’t a survivor because she was in a “different part of the school” than where the 17 victims died.
Gibson also went after Hogg, who stated that NRA spokeswoman Dana Loesch works with gun manufacturers to lobby Congress. According to Gibson’s tweet, Hogg was”a bald faced liar. Dana Loesch ‘owns’ Congressmen? Completely absurd.”
While the tweets are now deleted, screenshots remain posted to the website by other users:
You said it was @gibson_house that said that?— Darth Mueller (@TrumanChapman27) March 12, 2018
Like, LESLIE GIBSON, the Tresurer of @AndroGOP? The guy running for District 57 State House seat? He called @Emma4Change what???
A "skin head lesbian"? #ParklandShooting#mepolitics pic.twitter.com/0q0YEZMCvL
According to the Sun Journal via the Portland Press Herald, Gibson apologized for using the label as a slur toward González, but said that because of his career in the military, he swore to “uphold and defend the Constitution of the United States.”
“Because of this, I am very passionate about protecting our constitutional rights from those who seek their elimination. It was not appropriate to single out the Parkland students, but I stand firm in my defense of our constitutional rights.”
“I would like to extend to you my most sincere apology for how I addressed you,” Gibson wrote in a separate tweet. “It was wrong and unacceptable. You are doing work that is important to you. I would like to extend my hand in friendship and understanding to you.”
Democratic organizer Pat Fogg said she wished she knew someone who could run against Gibson.
“That sort of stupidity really turns people off,” Fogg said.
H/T Associated Press