Republican lawmaker removed from leadership following ‘manifesto’ controversy

Nov 28, 2018, 2:08 PM | Updated: 3:35 pm

Matt Shea...

Rep. Matt Shea, R-Spokane, speaks at a gun-rights rally, at the Capitol in Olympia, Wash. in 2017. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

(AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

Following his reelection to the House, State Representative Matt Shea has been dropped from his Republican leadership role in Washington.

“Thank you to all of you who pressured House Republicans to do the right thing and remove Matt Shea as caucus chair,” Lt. Governor Cyrus Habib said via Twitter this week. “Advocating violence against religious minorities is both immoral and un-American. You made that clear, and your voices were heard!”

Rep. Shea, of Spokane Valley, came under scrutiny before the November election for a Biblical “manifesto” that many found controversial, relating it to racist and anti-Semitic rhetoric common with white nationalists. The document talked about how to wage a war according to points found in the Bible. It describes a holy army that should first offer peace, but “kill all males” if that peace is rejected. It also notes that a “tyrant” is someone who rules without God, and says assassinating a tyrant is just and not murder.

Shea argues that the four-page document is not a manifesto, rather, notes on a sermon detailing the Bible’s justifications for war. He admits to writing the document and has has spoken about it publicly before the controversy around the election. Shea said the manifesto claims are smears and publicly said that he does not support racism, anti-Semitism, or white nationalism.

But on Monday, KIRO Radio reporter Hanna Scott discovered that Shea was no longer listed as the head of the House GOP caucus. Instead, Rep. Paul Harris of Vancouver was taking on the role.

Despite Shea’s insistence that he did not write a manifesto, many campaign donors asked for their money back. The negative press didn’t keep him out of office, however, and 58 percent of voters in District 4 reelected Shea in November.

Following his reelection, Lt. Governor Habib called for state Republican leaders to remove Shea as chair of the House Republicans. Habib said the “manifesto” threatened religious minorities.

MyNorthwest News

Image: The broken steering column of a car recently stolen by a group of teenagers and a 12-year-ol...

James Lynch

Teenagers, 12-year-old charged with violent crime spree in Seattle

King County prosecutors announced charges against three teenagers and a 12-year-old child for a crime spree earlier this month in Seattle.

1 hour ago

Image: The Auburn Police Department and Kings County Sheriffs Deputies responded to an incident in ...

Steve Coogan

Suspect dead in Auburn after eviction order leads to officer involved shooting

The King County Sheriff's Office confirmed its deputies were involved in an officer involved shooting Friday morning in Auburn.

6 hours ago

Image: Traffic on Interstate 5 passes through downtown on Nov. 28, 2013, in Seattle. Seattle, locat...

Steve Coogan

If you haven’t already left for the holiday weekend, you’re in trouble

AAA notes that traveling by car is appealing for many during a holiday weekend because of the flexibility it provides. But it brings traffic.

6 hours ago

spd chief leave...

Frank Sumrall

SPD’s assistant chief placed on administrative leave

The Assistant Chief of the Seattle Police Department (SPD) has been placed on administrative leave, according to Police Chief Adrian Diaz.

12 hours ago

constitutional unlawful detainer...

Matt Markovich

How does Washington fix its eviction case backlog? A constitutional change is needed

King County is struggling with this workload due to a constitutional requirement that unlawful detainer cases must be heard by a constitutional commissioner.

14 hours ago

king county gangs...

James Lynch

Are big time gangs operating in King County?

After a string of shootings, King County prosecutors believe the region is suffering from a gang problem, but it's more complicated than it seems.

15 hours ago

Republican lawmaker removed from leadership following ‘manifesto’ controversy