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[UPDATED] Another Terrible Man Has Inspired a Capable Woman to Run for Office

UPDATED 3/16 8:20 PM: Leslie Gibson has dropped out of the race for state legislature, saying that after talking it over with friends and colleagues, this seems to be “the best thing for everybody.”  We agree! Good riddance, and GFY, Les.

Since the election of Donald Trump, women have started running for office in record-breaking numbers. Specifically, democratic, pro-choice women are entering the political sphere, because if the Republican Party can scrape the bottom of the barrel to elect a reality TV star with zero experience and allow him to strip women, immigrants, POC, and LGBTQIA people of their rights, then sure, we’re going to fight back.

The latest man inspiring women to step over the bar he’s attempting to set for humanity is Leslie Gibson, a Republican from Maine who is running for the State House of Representatives. This human trash fire felt it was appropriate–necessary, even–to call Parkland shooting survivor and tireless activist Emma Gonzalez a “skinhead lesbian.” (His full comment was that “There is nothing about this skinhead lesbian that impresses me and there is nothing that she has to say unless you’re frothing at the mouth moonbat.”)

He called another student a “bald-faced liar.” He made these comments on his Twitter account, which he has since deleted. In another tweet, he said Gonzalez couldn’t be considered a survivor because she “was in a completely different part of the school” during the shooting. He said this about an 18-year-old girl who saw 17 lives lost inside her high school.

On Monday, he sort-of-not-really apologized, saying he was just upholding the oath he made while serving in the military to always uphold the constitution. “Because of this,” he said, “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.”

Fuck his “passion.” This man is the worst humanity has to offer.

And while his comments would, hopefully, be the end of his political career, Gibson was running unopposed, making these comments just days before the filing deadline for potential candidates. Gibson’s assholery went semi-viral, but among local Democrats, he still wasn’t seeing any opposition. Until now.

28-year-old Eryn Gilchrest has entered the race, working through Maine’s current massive snowstorm to file her paperwork Thursday, which was the deadline to do so. On her decision to run, she said,

I never thought I would run for office, and I was perfectly content with just remaining a member of the community, but after reading Mr. Gibson’s comments I thought that the people of Greene and Sabattus deserved a representative who will respect people and try to work through their differences to make our lives better. That’s what I pledge to do if I am lucky enough to be elected, and I look forward to working hard over the next several months to earn the trust and support of people throughout my community.

So thank you, Leslie Gibson and all terrible men like you, for encouraging capable women to run for office themselves. Most of us would be perfectly content remaining members of the community, if not for your total commitment to poisoning us all with your awfulness.

(via Maine Dems, image: Jason Kolenda / Shutterstock)

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Vivian Kane (she/her) has a lot of opinions about a lot of things. Born in San Francisco and radicalized in Los Angeles, she now lives in Kansas City, Missouri with her husband Brock Wilbur and too many cats.

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