LEWISTON, Maine — A Republican Maine House candidate has used Twitter to attack two students who survived a shooting at a Florida high school, calling one of them a "skinhead lesbian" and the other a "bald-faced liar."
Leslie Gibson is the only declared candidate for the 57th District and told the Sun Journal it was "not appropriate to single out the Parkland students." But he says he stands firm in his defense of "our constitutional rights." He says he served in the military and took an oath "to uphold and defend the Constitution of the United States."
A Democratic organizer in Greene says, "That sort of stupidity really turns people off." Organizer Pat Fogg says she wishes she knew someone who could jump into the race.
The newspaper says Gibson has since made his Twitter account private.
It's not the first the Parkland students have come under fire. An employee of the Florida House, Ben Kelly alleged in February that survivors David Hogg and Emma González were not students at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, but paid crisis actors. Kelly was promptly fired.
Around the time of his firing, Kelly also "liked" a tweet that called González — who is bisexual — a "brown bald lesbian girl."
And a Republican Pennsylvania state Representative, Daryl Metcalfe, called Parkland survivors "'students'" — with the word in quotation marks.