LOCAL NEWS

Rep. Shea ‘brought disgrace’ to Republicans, state Legislature says GOP leader

Dec 20, 2019, 8:36 AM | Updated: 8:48 am
Matt Shea...
Washington Rep. Matt Shea. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)
(AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

Washington state Rep. Matt Shea came under fire Thursday, after an independent report alleged he participated in domestic violence against the U.S. government. Now, his colleagues in Olympia on both sides of the aisle are calling for his resignation.

Rep. Matt Shea allegedly engaged in domestic terrorism

“He should resign — I think he’s brought disgrace into his caucus and the state Legislature,” state House GOP leader J.T. Wilcox told KIRO Radio.

A House report alleges 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 Washington over a three-year period.”

The report further alleges Shea engaged in armed conflict at Bunkerville, Nevada in April 2014, the conflict at Priest River, Idaho in 2015, engaged in calls and planning of the 2016 takeover of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge, and met with refuge armed occupiers in Burns, Oregon.

“I am unaware of House members ever having received such a comprehensive and disturbing investigatory report about another member,” state House Speaker-designate Laurie Jinkins (D-Tacoma) said in a news release.

This isn’t the first time Shea has been in hot water. Just before he was re-elected in 2018, he came under scrutiny before for a Biblical “manifesto,” 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.

Matt Shea: I do background checks on people who threaten me

Shortly after that, he was removed from his Republican leadership role in Olympia. With this latest report alleging he committed acts of possible domestic terrorism, he’s been removed from the Republican caucus altogether.

“I hope that Matt has a day in court where he can present his side of the story, but at this point the House Republicans need to stand up for the fact that this is not the right thing for a person who is a member of our caucus to be engaged in,” said Rep. Wilcox. “I think his influence in the Legislature is at an end.”

That all being so, this could also be just the beginning of his troubles, with the findings in the report now getting turned over to the U.S. Attorney’s office.

“He has much bigger problems than whether or not he can serve as a state representative,” noted Wilcox.

Shea responded to the allegations on Facebook Thursday night, likening his current situation to President Trump’s.

Like we are seeing with our President this is a sham investigation meant to silence those of us who stand up against attempts to disarm and destroy our great country. I will not back down, I will not give in, I will not resign. Stand strong fellow Patriots. Thank you to everyone for the massive outpouring of support prayers! I will continue to defend the constitution against tyranny and fight to protect our God given unalienable rights to life, liberty, property, and the ability to defend the same.”

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Rep. Shea ‘brought disgrace’ to Republicans, state Legislature says GOP leader