GOP prez candidates criticize Bundy seditionists

In a surprising move for a party that normally relishes its embrace of anything gun, Republican presidential candidates Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio and Rand Paul all distanced themselves from the armed anti-government militiamen who recently took over a federal building in Oregon.

The ongoing standoff out west includes two sons of anti-government extremist Cliven Bundy, who had his own siege with the federal government a few years back.

The militiamen involved in the takeover have made no bones about the fact that they’re armed, and at least one posted a goodbye YouTube video to his family, suggesting the anti-government extremists either planned, or expected, to die.

Conservative hopeful Ted Cruz has reason to be concerned about the situation in Oregon. Two years ago, Cruz defended Bundy’s earlier siege, going so far as to use the infamous word “jackboot.” That word is particularly troubling as it was used by the NRA’s Wayne LaPierre to describe federal employees less than one week before the Oklahoma City Bombing in 1995:

On April 13 [1995], less than a week before the Oklahoma City bombing, Mr. LaPierre signed a fund-raising letter asserting that President Clinton’s ban on assault weapons “gives jackbooted Government thugs more power to take away our constitutional rights, break in our doors, seize our guns, destroy our property and even injure and kill us.”

President George H.W. Bush famously resigned his membership in the NRA over that comment.

That history didn’t stop Senator Cruz from using the word to describe federal officials only two years ago, but it may very well have given presidential-candidate Cruz pause, now that his friends on the gun-loving right seem hellbent on dying in a blaze of seditious gunfire.

Any time a self-proclaimed Republican distances himself from gun-lovers, it’s news, and should tell us something. In this case, it tells us that not only is the situation in Oregon extremely dangerous, but it also suggests that not every gun issue is a winner for the GOP. Even amongst the crazies, there are some deemed too crazy.

That’s a weakness gun safety advocates need to exploit.

InsideOutsider is a longtime Democrat who has worked for a variety of progressive organizations and causes. He lives in Washington, DC.

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11 Responses to “GOP prez candidates criticize Bundy seditionists”

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  2. rmthunter says:

    Bingo. I noted elsewhere that these jerks have made themselves toxic to the right wing — no one wants to have anything to do with them. If Ammon Bundy is getting slapped down by Megyn Kelly, you know things are bad.

  3. rmthunter says:

    I’m fine with it, except I’d say let people in — sans any supplies they might be bringing (and I mean no nothing carried in but the clothes on their backs) — but don’t let anyone out.

  4. BeccaM says:

    There’s no part of the PR optics of the attempted insurrection in Oregon which fails to make the #Yeehawdi participants look like unhinged lunatics — rebels without anything resembling a sane cause. And social media has been unrelenting in pointing out all the different ways these guys are idiots and pretty much the opposite of ‘Constitution-loving patriots.’

    The target was apparently picked almost at random due to proximity, after it turned out the two arson-convicted ranchers didn’t want the protesters’ support and were going to turn themselves in to prison anyway. The occupation site is a popular bird sanctuary, too, one created in 1908 by a Republican president, Teddy Roosevelt.

    I suspect even my (literally) card-carrying Bircher father (since deceased) would have referred to these guys as “f*cking jagoffs.” There’s really nothing to be gained politically in siding with them, not even for the Republican would-be presidential candidates.

    And these yahoos aren’t ‘anti-government militiamen’. They are anti-government insurrectionists who have openly boasted they hope to spark an armed revolution, overthrowing the entire U.S. federal government. At least one sent out a video making himself sound like a would-be suicide bomber.

    Chuck’s proposal below is a good one, given we’re talking criminal trespassing on federal property, as well as threats of violence. Block the roads, in and out. Cut off the utilities. Jam the cell phones. They’ll probably surrender as soon as their supplies of beer and Funyons run out. Then charge them for every penny of damage they did to the property which belongs to the American taxpayers.

  5. BeccaM says:

    As many have noted, one of the ringleaders in this attempted #Yeehawdi insurrection is Ammon Bundy (son of famous unreconstructed racist and federal land moocher, Cliven Bundy). Ammon was the recipient of a nearly half million dollar SBA loan to build his Arizona-based limo business. Public records, unfortunately, do not show whether or not he repaid the loan, but even if he did, the cost of that loan to taxpayers is estimated to be around $22k.

  6. BeccaM says:


  7. nicho says:

    a : a part of the organized armed forces of a country liable to call only in emergency

    b : a body of citizens organized for military service

    Please stop calling them “militiamen” or their group a “militia.” They are neither. They’re just insurgents and criminals.

  8. Hue-Man says:

    Part of Justin Trudeau’s election platform on guns. Many reverse Conservative pro-gun policies.

    require enhanced background checks for anyone seeking to purchase a handgun or other restricted firearm;

    require purchasers of firearms to show a license when they buy a gun, and require all sellers of firearms to confirm that the license is valid before completing the sale;

    require firearms vendors to keep records of all firearms inventory and sales to assist police in investigating firearms trafficking and other gun crimes;

    as part of our investment in border infrastructure, invest in technologies to enhance our border guards’ ability to detect and halt illegal guns from the United States entering into Canada.

    And the gun lobby reaction is familiar:

    “Firearms groups apoplectic after Liberals promise new gun control measures”

  9. emjayay says:

    None of them can be expected to walk anywhere, leaving behind the huge new pickup trucks they are somehow able to afford even though being totally oppressed by the federal government and denied their God given right to a livelihood. .

  10. 2karmanot says:

    “YouTube video to his family, suggesting the anti-government extremists either planned, or expected, to die.” Works for me.

  11. Seal off the perimeter, jam the cell phones, allow NO ONE in, and cut off utilities. Let them know that if they have not caused any damage, any one of them can approach the perimeter, surrender their guns, and walk free between now and Sunday. That would be taking the moral high ground, it would negate their pretensions of martyrdom, and the whole situation ends with a whimper and not a bang.

    If they don’t comply, just let them stew in their own juices. This militia crap is getting old.

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