Investigation finds GOP lawmaker planned violent uprisings to create a Christian state

An investigation into Washington GOP Rep. Matt Shea (WA) revealed credible evidence earlier this month that he had actively participated in domestic terrorism during the armed takeover of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge in Oregon in 2016, New York magazine reports. It’s been revealed that Shea participated in four phone calls with Ammon Bundy, one of the perpetrators of the takeover, even to the point of creating a complex military-style plan called “Operation Reality.” The plan detailed the roles of various militia-members and the Coalition of Western States, an organization run by Shea.

Concerns were raised about Shea last year after it was revealed that he was the author of a manifesto, The Biblical Basis for War, in which he argued that regarding the teachings of Christ, American Christians have been given approval to “kill all males” who support same-sex marriage, abortion, or communism (but don’t worry—infidels are given the chance to repent before they are killed.)

Shea tried to wave the manifesto off as nothing more than “a summary of church sermons on Old Testament war that could help place current events in historical context,” but in the end, it cost him his job as Chair of the Republican Caucus in Washington’s state legislature.

And thanks to an investigation conducted The Guardian last April, we now know that Shea sent text messages in which he discussed targeting anti-fascist activists through surveillance, harassment, and violence.

One such example?

Shea partook in a conversation with alt-right radio commentator Jack Robertson, who suggested female Antifa protesters receive this treatment:

“Fist full of hair, and face slam, to a Jersey barrier. Treat ’em like Communist revolutionaries. Then shave her bald with a K-Bar USMC field knife.”

Shea’s response?

“Okay. What BG [background checks] need to be done. Give me the list.”

But despite the fact that Shea’s activities — including his work with Robertson on a plan calling for eastern Washington to secede and form a “Liberty State,” something that worried even ardent Trump supporters, J.T. Wilcox, leader of Washington’s House Republicans, didn’t see fit to expel him from working in the government.

Instead, he merely said Shea’s comments in the chat were “deeply upsetting,” and that “my conversation with Matt and the leadership will continue,” even though Trump-supporting Spokane County Sheriff Ozzie Knezovich and one of Shea’s former supporters, Jay Pounder, provided journalists as well as the state legislature with documents that highlighted Shea’s plans for establishing a theocratic government in the state following a so-called “collapse event.”

So when the House of Representatives finally commissioned a former FBI agent to write a report on Shea, they put forth a number of allegations, which included, according to New York Magazine, that Shea, “as a leader in the Patriot Movement, planned, engaged in, and promoted a total of three armed conflicts of political violence against the United States Government in three states outside of the state of Washington over a three-year period.”

It should be noted that even though Wilcox is now calling for Shea’s resignation and he has been “suspended” from the House Republican caucus, he is still serving as a state legislator in Washington.

Featured image via Washington Legislature 

Megan Hamilton

Megan Hamilton has traveled extensively throughout the Southern United States, Mexico, and parts of Central America. A lifelong atheist, these travels have informed her political views. She currently lives in a remote location with a large herd of cats and four dogs.