A Republican candidate for the Maine House of Representatives has used Twitter to attack two students who survived a mass shooting at a Florida high school, calling one of them, who is openly bisexual, a "skinhead lesbian" and the other 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 frothing at the mouth moonbat,” Leslie Gibson wrote about 18-year-old Emma Gonzalez, one of the most visible student activists to emerge from the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, which left 17 people dead.
Gibson is the only declared candidate for the 57th District and told Maine's Sun Journal on Monday that it was "not appropriate to single out the Parkland students," who have been vocal about their desire for stricter gun control. But he said he stands firm in his defense of "our constitutional rights." He said he served in the military and took an oath "to uphold and defend the Constitution of the United States."
The Sun Journal reported that Gibson made the controversial tweets recently.
Pat Fogg, a Democratic organizer in the town of Greene, Maine, said, "That sort of stupidity really turns people off." Fogg added that she hopes someone will jump into the race to challenge Gibson.
Matt Moonen, executive director of LGBTQ advocacy group Equality Maine, slammed Gibson's comments, calling them "deeply out of touch with the people of Maine."
"Emma Gonzalez is a courageous young woman who is stepping up and speaking out. Mr. Gibson's attack on her sexual orientation was reprehensible," Moonen told NBC News. "This kind of rhetoric has no place in any elected office, and certainly not in the Maine House of Representatives."
Gibson has since deactivated his Twitter account, but multiple news outlets have taken screen shots of his offending remarks.
Meanwhile, furor over Gibson's comments has erupted on social media, with some, like Fogg, calling for another candidate to join the race just to oppose him.
Gonzalez has not yet responded to Gibson's remarks.