Transgender Vermont gubernatorial nominee says she is getting death threats

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Christine Hallquist, the Democratic nominee for Vermont governor, said she has been receiving regular death threats in recent days.

Hallquist made history last week when she became the first transgender woman to win a major party’s nomination for governor.

She told ABC News that people often shouted insults at her during public appearances throughout her primary campaign, but said that the national attention to her primary win has resulted in more threats, mostly from outside the state.

“Early on when our team assembled I said ‘the more successful we are, the more vitriol and threats we are going to receive,’ ” Hallquist told ABC News on Tuesday. “It’s kind of a natural outcome of our divided country.”

{mosads} She said that her campaign has been taking extra precautions ahead of public appearances and is not publicizing her campaign headquarters’ locations. She said the campaign has also reported the threats to the FBI and state police.

Hallquist said that the threats, of which a dozen have been “actual death threats,” have come through phone calls and on social media.

Her opponent, incumbent Gov. Phil Scott (R), condemned the threats, telling ABC News that he does not tolerate hate speech or violence against anyone.

“We must — as a society — do better to combat anger and violence,” he said. “I’m hopeful Vermonters will join me in ensuring everyone — regardless of gender, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, religion or other characteristics — are treated with dignity, respect and acceptance.”

Hallquist’s challenge to Scott is likely to be a steep uphill battle, as the Republican governor has a strong approval rating among Vermonters, most of whom said in a poll ahead of the primary that they had not heard of, or had no opinion of Hallquist.

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