Cliven Bundy

Cliven Bundy85 posts

Cliven Bundy is an American rancher who is in an ongoing dispute with the Bureau of Land Management about cattle grazing rights on federal lands in Nevada

8 May, 2014
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FBI investigating threats, weapons violations

The FBI launches an investigation into the events of April 12, where militia members threatened BLM and law enforcement officials with firearms. The investigation also encompasses allegations of death threats, intimidation, and weapons violations surrounding the standoff. The investigation begins with FBI agents interviewing local law enforcement officials. Militia members and Bundy supporters claim they never pointed guns at anyone, and all of the weapons violations were committed by BLM agents. Sergeant Tom Jenkins of the Las Vegas Metro Police, who has already spoken with FBI investigators, says otherwise:

It is not a rumor. When we first got out there and made a left to divide I-15, that is all you saw. You saw kids and women and horses in the backdrop and then men with guns, laying on the ground, in the back of pickup trucks. We’re going, ‘wow, this would never happen in Las Vegas,’ But it was there. That is not a rumor. It is reality and I saw it with my own eyes.

Bundy supporter and Nevada militia member Brand Thornton challenges that assertion, and says that Jenkins and the other police officers are lying. He admits to carrying an AK-47 to the April 12 standoff, but says neither he nor anyone else pointed their weapons at police or BLM agents. He says that none of the copious number of photographs of militia members pointing their weapons at police and BLM officials prove anything, saying of one photo:

He could have been easily aiming 30 feet over their heads so how are you going to prove that?

7 May, 2014
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Horsford: Community wants militia out

Nevada congressman Steven Horsford says he wants Bundy’s armed supporters to leave. He says their presence is harming the economy, and businesses in the area report high profit losses. Horsford also says residents fear for their safety:

But when young kids don’t feel safe going to school, when moms don’t feel safe going to church on Sunday, and when law enforcement feels like their lives are at risk, then the general community’s rights have been violated

2 May, 2014
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Demands Sheriff investigate BLM

Ammon Bundy and other family members enter the Las Vegas Police headquarters to demand that Clark County Sheriff Doug Gillespie open an investigation into the BLM’s actions during the standoff:

We want the sheriff of Clark County to investigate the federal government for its actions. Their jurisdiction is not in the county and they must be held accountable.

The Las Vegas police responds that it is not its practice to take crime reports on law enforcement agencies conducting a law enforcement function. The BLM responds with a brief statement:

We welcome Mr. Bundy’s new interest in the American legal system.

1 May, 2014
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Residents split over militia presence

Some of the area residents say they are tired of the militia members still “patrolling” the area. Residents and travelers are calling the Mesquite police in record numbers, expressing worry about their safety from the hundreds of armed militia members who have stationed themselves alongside the highway. Bunkerville resident John Booth says:

Most of our neighbors have about the same opinions we have. They don’t like it. But they’re not really going to say anything about it.

Militia members have vowed to remain with Bundy to protect him from government attacks, though no imminent threat presents itself. Militia leader Jerry DeLemus says, “We haven’t been told by the Bundys that they’re ready for us to go.” Bundy explains why armed militia members are seen with him even at church:

The militia have been going with me everywhere. When I got to church, I said, ‘Leave your weapons in the car.’ They did. I guess there could have been weapons in the parking lot, but there were no weapons in the church house.

Some Bunkerville residents and civic leaders praise Bundy and the militia at a town hall meeting. They say the local police department did not do enough to to keep their citizens safe from the BLM, and express their concern for the amount of force they believe the BLM has used in attempts to convince Bundy to pay his grazing fees.

25 Apr, 2014
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Supporters: media misrepresents Bundy

Interview

Bundy supporters say the media has taken Bundy’s comments about slavery out of context. They provide further comments made during the interview that the New York Times left out:

We’ve progressed quite a bit from that day until now, and sure don’t want to go back; we sure don’t want the colored people to go back to that point; we sure don’t want the Mexican people to go back to that point; and we can make a difference right now by taking care of some of these bureaucracies, and do it in a peaceful way.

They say that taken in the full context, Bundy’s comments come across as “pro-black and pro-Mexican” and anti-federal government for not providing adequate assistance to minorities.

Cliven Bundy (Full) Controversial Remarks April 19, 2014

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Bundy: MLK would support me

Makes Statement

Bundy says that Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. would support him. He also compares himself to Rosa Parks, whom he repeatedly calls “Rosa Park:”

What Reverend King wanted was that [Parks] could sit anywhere in the bus and nobody would say anything about it. You and I can sit anywhere in the bus. That’s what he wanted. That’s what I want. … He didn’t want this prejudice thing like the media tried to put on me yesterday. I’m not going to put up with that because that’s not what he wanted. that’s not what I want.

Bundy adds that if he did say that blacks would be better off as slaves, he has the right to do so, just as he has the right to use racially offensive terms:

[I]f I say ‘negro’ or ‘black boy’ or ‘slave,’ I’m — If those people cannot take those kind of words and not be offensive, then Martin Luther King hasn’t got his job done yet. They should be able to — I should be able to say those things and they shouldn’t offend anybody. I didn’t mean to offend them.

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Calls for Times to retract quotes, restates stance

Apology

Bundy, appearing on the Alex Jones radio show, demands that the New York Times retract its quotes of him making what are considered by many to be racist remarks about African-Americans. In the interview, he reiterates his views that blacks may have been better off as slaves. Bundy says he wants to tell “the black community” that he has “gained more respect and more love for you in the last few weeks than I ever had.” He then says:

Put it this way, I said I’m wondering, I’m wondering if you’re better off. The young women are having abortions, and the young men are being thrown in jail, and your older women are sitting out on the sidewalk with your children and grandchildren and they don’t seem to be happy. And what I’m wondering is are you better off in this type of slavery than when you were home with your family unit with your gardens, with your chickens, with your men working and your family life. Are you better off now or were you better off then? I’m a-wondering these things. … [I]t seems to me like maybe they were happier, maybe they did have better families,and their family structure was better [under slavery].

Jones attempts to explain Bundy’s comments by saying that blacks have “traded a new form of slavery for an old form of slavery,” and says that Bundy’s position is the same “libertarian, conservative refrain that I’ve heard from every libertarian and conservative black leader I’ve had on this show.” Bundy says the Times is “totally wrong” for labeling his remarks as racist, and says the Times misquoted him. In a separate interview, he apologizes for his comments:

I hope I didn’t offend anybody. If I did, I ask for your forgiveness…But I meant what I said. It comes from the heart.

24 Apr, 2014
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Senators condemn Bundy’s remarks

Shortly after Bundy’s remarks about African-Americans being better off as slaves, US Senator Dean Heller (R-NV), who previously has stated his support for Bundy, says through a spokesperson that he

completely disagrees with Mr. Bundy’s appalling and racist statements, and condemns them in the most strenuous way.

Another supporter, Senator Rand Paul (R-KY), who like Heller has expressed his support for Bundy, now states:

His remarks on race are offensive and I wholeheartedly disagree with him.

Additionally, the conservative organization Americans for Prosperity Nevada deletes all of its material posted in support of Bundy from its Facebook and Twitter accounts.

US Senator Harry Reid (D-NV), who has called Bundy and his followers “domestic terrorists,” slams Bundy for his allegedly racist remarks and his position on grazing fees:

I used to live in North Las Vegas and it is home to some of the hardest-working people I have ever met — men and women who embody the American dream by working hard every day to build a better life for themselves and their families. By contrast, Cliven Bundy has spent decades profiting off government land while refusing to pay the same fair use fees as his fellow ranchers. Today, Bundy revealed himself to be a hateful racist. But by denigrating people who work hard and play by the rules while he mooches off public land he also revealed himself to be a hypocrite.

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Bundy, others dispute ‘racist’ label

Bundy’s  “Bundy Ranch” account on Facebook, disputes the characterization of him as “racist:”

There are new rumors going around about Cliven. We all know that with the media, words are taken out of context, meanings are twisted, and they can take anything and turn it into what they want it to be. Cliven is a good man, he loves all people, he is not a racist man. He wants what is best for everyone.

Others also come to his defense. His wife Carol explains:

What he was saying is that there are lots of different forms of slavery. Welfare is one kind. It’s just another way to suppress people.

And a militia member who spent eight days at the ranch adds:

His statements were not a criticism of blacks. They criticized the federal government. I’ve met the Bundys, and that’s not who they are.

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Bundy: Are blacks better off as slaves?

Interview

In a speech praising  his supporters, Bundy makes controversial remarks about African-Americans:

I want to tell you one more thing I know about the Negro…they didn’t have nothing to do. They didn’t have nothing for their kids to do. They didn’t have nothing for their young girls to do. And because they were basically on government subsidy, so now what do they do? They abort their young children, they put their young men in jail, because they never learned how to pick cotton. And I’ve often wondered, are they better off as slaves, picking cotton and having a family life and doing things, or are they better off under government subsidy? They didn’t get no more freedom. They got less freedom.

VIDEO: Cliven Bundy's Racist Remarks

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Hannity: Bundy remarks ‘repugnant’

Fox News host Sean Hannity, once a vocal Bundy supporter, now accuses Bundy of making “repugnant” racist remarks, and says he is giving Democrats the opportunity to paint all Republicans as racist. Hannity describes himself as “pissed off” about Bundy’s remarks, and says:

His comments are beyond repugnant to me. They are beyond despicable to me. They are beyond ignorant to me.

Bundy says that he does not feel “abandoned” by Hannity and Fox News:

I don’t think I’ve been abandoned. I think maybe they just misunderstood me a little bit. But I think Fox and I, I think Hannity and I are just right on. I have no doubt he would re-support me if he understood really what’s in my heart, and I think he does understand me.

MSNBC conservative host Joe Scarborough says that conservatives who supported Bundy are now “exposed” in light of Bundy’s comments.

21 Apr, 2014
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Bundy critical of ‘domestic terrorist’ label

Bundy, giving an interview on Fox News, challenges Senator Harry Reid’s characterization of him and his family as “domestic terrorists.” Bundy says:

Who is the domestic terrorist here? Did you see ‘we the people’ with guns or did you see the United States government with guns?

Bundy recommends that Congress “pull Harry [Reid] in and straighten him out.”

Apr 2014
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Official: Bundy acted within his rights

Barry Weller of the Apache County, Arizona Board of Supervisors says that Bundy’s actions are entirely within the law. Referring to a Nevada court case won by Wayne Hage, who argued that he had the right to graze his cows on federal land because it was within two miles of water sources he had developed, Weller says:

The Bundys and the Hages are standing on what’s called their water rights and their grazing rights [which] were pre-existing in territorial times, long before the government took over and these states became states and these water rights are mentioned, and any federal law or policy act that comes thereafter is always stated, ‘subject to pre-existing rights.’ So, when people say they’re not legally doing what they’re doing, they are. They are doing what they’re supposed to be doing: standing for their rights.

Instead, Weller says, the federal government was engaged in what he calls a “criminal shakedown” for payment:

That was absolutely deadly force. … Several cattle were killed as they rounded them up and pulled them into the BLM pens. It’s just a devastation of force.

15 Apr, 2014
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Dwindling Tea Party support

Many Tea Party organizations are backing away from their support of Bundy, as are most prominent Republican officials. They say that their opposition to the Affordable Care Act (“Obamacare”) does a better job of symbolizing their opposition to big government, and many of them are uncomfortable with Bundy’s narrative of a wealthy rancher who has refused to pay his legally assessed grazing fees. One Nevada conservative activist says:

People who aren’t in tune with the story just jumped all over it. And then you go back and read the facts of the story, and then you go, ‘Uh oh.’ … This is one of those things that got way out of hand. It just feels like something that should have been handled a long time ago.

14 Apr, 2014
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BLM not involved in Bundy deal

BLM spokesperson Craig Leff says that neither his agency nor the National Park Service were part of the deal that terminated the agency’s efforts to confiscate Bundy’s cattle:

The BLM and National Park Service did not cut any deal and negotiate anything. There was no deal we made.

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Bundy: No contract with United States

Glenn Beck, who also owns a ranch, asks Bundy if he is a “welfare rancher” because he is not paying fees other ranchers pay:

I would pay my grazing fees to the proper government and I did try to pay my grazing fees to the proper government. I do not have a contract with the United States because I will not sign that contract with the United States. I have no contract. I did not graze my cattle on the United States property. And I would pay my grazing fees to the proper government.

Bundy claims that the people of Nevada were “forced” to give up title to its land in order for the federal government to make it a state. The state and county governments, not the federal government, owns and operates that land, Bundy claims. “It’s not BLM land. It’s Nevada land.”

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Militia considered women ‘human shields’

Former Graham County, Arizona Sheriff Richard Mack, one of the militia leaders who participated in the armed standoff with federal authorities, says he and other organizers planned on putting women in front of them in case law enforcement officials began shooting:

If they’re going to start killing people, I’m sorry, but to show the world how ruthless these people are, women needed to be the first ones shot. I’m sorry, that sounds horrible. I would have put my own wife or daughters there, and I would have been screaming bloody murder to watch them die. I would’ve gone next, I would have been the next one to be killed. I’m not afraid to die here. I’m willing to die here.

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Militia leader: Feds plan to raid ranch

Militia leader and Bundy supporter Richard Mack tells radio host Ben Swann that his sources inside law enforcement tell him Federal authorities are planning an armed raid on the Bundy ranch and the homes of Bundy’s children:

[The standdown] was a ploy to get people to back off, to get people out of the way. They weren’t expecting us to get this amount of people here. They were surprised by the numbers and so they wanted a way to get us out of here. This was a ploy to get us out of here and then they’re going after the Bundys. … If they do that kind of raid, I don’t believe there’s any way that could happen without bloodshed.

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Reid: ‘It’s not over’

US Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) warns that just because federal authorities chose to stand down at the Bundy ranch instead of continue confiscating cattle, the issue has not been settled:

Well, it’s not over. We can’t have an American people that violate the law and then just walk away from it. So it’s not over.

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Militia stay to ‘protect’ Bundy

Many of the militia members who came to stand with Bundy against the federal government say they are staying in order to continue “protecting” Bundy. Ryan Payne, a coordinator with Operation Mutual Aid, a national coalition of militia groups, says that militia units will remain “until we feel that there’s nothing more to worry about”:

Once you’ve won a battle, even though this was a bloodless battle and won the standoff, you prepare a defensive posture and prepare for a counterattack.

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Son: Fees will not be paid

Ammon Bundy, one of Clive Bundy’s grown sons, says his father has no intention of ever paying the $1 million in fees he owes the BLM. He says if any authorities attempt to arrest his father or anyone else:

It will cause an uproar and it will be 10 times bigger than this.

12 Apr, 2014
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Enviromentalists protest BLM deal

The Center for Biological Diversity, a Nevada environmental organization, denounces the BLM’s deal with Bundy to terminate the cattle confiscation. CBD environmentalist Rob Mrowka says the BLM’s decision to pull out amounts to surrendering to “an armed anarchist group.” Mrowka adds:

The sovereign militias are ruling the day. Now that this precedent has been set and they’re emboldened by the government’s capitulation, what’s to stop them from applying the same tactics and threats elsewhere?

Retired Arizona BLM manager Roger Tayler notes,

The (BLM) is going to be in a worse situation where they will have a much more difficult time getting those cattle off the land and getting Bundy in compliance with regulations.

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Bundy: no deal made

Though the BLM reached a deal over the cattle with Bundy and local and state officials, Bundy claims that no deal was made:

There is no deal here. The citizens of America and Clark County went and took their cattle. There was no negotiations. They took these cattle. They are in possession of these cattle and I expect them to come home soon.

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Bundy, supporters celebrate victory

Bundy and his supporters celebrate victory after the BLM decides to end the confiscation of his cattle. He addresses a crowd outside his ranch by shouting:

Good morning, America! Good morning, world! Isn’t it a beautiful day in Bunkerville? … We the people in this area have nothing to fear. We can carry our weapons if we like because we have Second Amendment rights, and those are God-given rights. Those Second Amendment rights are our rights. But, and I say ‘but,’ because we don’t have to carry them right now because we’re afraid. I’m telling you that right now. Because there’s been a lot of people who’ve been afraid, and I know that feeling. Just yesterday evening I was really afraid. … Today, we have been confirmed by our creator that we do not have to be afraid. This is his battle. This is his battle.

Bundy’s son Ammon claims that the hills around the ranch were filled with federal snipers, but, “We sent them packing.” He adds, “We won the battle,” referencing others’ description of the standoff as the “Battle of Bunkerville,” comparing to the Revolutionary War’s Battle of Bunker Hill. Cattle rancher Brent Mackelprang of Arizon says the decision to seize Bundy’s cattle had nothing to do with “the supposedly endangered” desert tortoise and was instead an excuse “to go in and grab land from the people.” The government’s entire conservativation efforts are “nothing but a lie,” he says:

It’s not about the turtle or the cactus or the spotted owl. This is all about the federal government overstepping its bounds like it always does and thinking it owns the world. Well, we’re here to say that it doesn’t. But if you’re a rancher and you’re living on the Colorado Plateau, then you’re going to need some luck to make a living.

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Six cattle die in roundup

DeathDeath Count

Six cattle die in the roundup to move them off of government land according to the BLM. Four of the cattle, two of which have Bundy brands, are euthanized. One of these cattle is euthanized after injuring its spine from running into a fence panel. The BLM does not say how the other two cattle died.

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BLM stops roundup, returns cattle

The BLM agrees to stop rounding up Bundy’s cattle, and to return the already-confiscated cattle. The agency says it is terminating the roundup because of safety concerns:

Based on information about conditions on the ground, and in consultation with law enforcement, we have made a decision to conclude the cattle gather because of our serious concern about the safety of employees and members of the public. We ask that all parties in the area remain peaceful and law-abiding as the Bureau of Land Management and National Park Service work to end the operation in an orderly manner.

The deal is brokered by Clark County Sheriff Doug Gillespie, along with input from a number of state and local officials. BLM says the deal does not obviate Bundy’s financial responsibility for owed grazing fees and delinquent penalties. Assistant sheriff Joe Lombardo says:

We had a lot of fears. Individuals being shot, trampled. Individuals being run over on the highway. So it took a lot of resources, a lot of resources to associate with this.

Governor Brian Sandoval (R-NV) says of the BLM’s decision:

The safety of all individuals involved in this matter has been my highest priority. Given the circumstances, today’s outcome is the best we could have hoped for. I appreciate that the Department of the Interior and the BLM were willing to listen to the concerns of the people of Nevada.

Jack Kay, a professor and expert on militias, says the BLM made the correct call to step back from the conflict:

These things tend to escalate, someone looks like they’re going to pull the trigger and then something happens.

Shortly after the announcement, the BLM frees the nearly 400 cattle it had managed to round up, letting them back on the same contested area of federal land.

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Armed supporters move to assault BLM compound

bundysniperThe militia leaders order their followers to “Go get the cattle” from the BLM holding pens. Bundy gives the order around noon. John O’Neill, a Montana militia member, calls his wife and tells her he may not survive the day. The militia, several hundred strong, bring unarmed women and children with them, and, according to an Arizona sheriff, “strategically [place] the women and children at the front of the line to make it difficult for armed agents to open fire.” The militia members also block the highway with their numbers. When they arrive at the BLM compound and cattle pen, just north of I-15, militiamen set themselves up as snipers on the southbound bridge, pointing their rifles at the compound. A small number of BLM agents and National Park Rangers, most in tactical gear and joined by about 30 Las Vegas and Nevada State Highway Patrol officers, respond by pointing their weapons at the visible militia members, while unarmed BLM and NPR employees involved in the cattle roundup stand behind them for protection. The standoff lasts for several hours. Finally, led by Ammon Bundy (and accompanied by a number of unarmed children), the militia forces, many on horseback, begin advancing on the cattle pen and the BLM contingent. One of the militia snipers tells his colleagues, “I’ve got a clear shot at four of them.” Later, people at the scene, including Clark County Deputy Sheriff Joe Lombardo, will say that anything, even the sound of a car backfiring, “might have touched off a bloodbath.” According to the Las Vegas Sun:

There’s no question among those who saw it: The militia members at the scene would have used their guns on the government agents if a fight had broken out.

Clark County Sheriff Doug Gillespie agrees, phoning state and federal officials and telling them that violence is imminent. The law enforcement officials repeatedly ask the advancing militia members to stand down. The standoff precipitates the decision to stand down and halt the confiscation of Bundy’s cattle. Las Vegas police officer Tom Roberts meets with Ammon Bundy and tells him that the BLM has agreed to stand down and release the cattle. Las Vegas police close off I-15 and usher BLM personnel to safety, leaving the militia members to remove the cattle from their pens. Gillespie says:

There have been no shots and nobody has been injured, and my men are working real hard to keep the calm. But emotions are high, and we’re going to make sure that it ends peacefully.

Later Facebook postings by members of the Bundy militia supporters indicate that they were targeting BLM and law enforcement officials. One will write:

They had a bead on the BLM snipers and at the first sound of rifle fire, the blm would have been looking for some new snipers.

Bundy Ranch Standoff, exclusive video report by Michael Flynn

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Sheriff warns of imminent firefight

Just before armed militia members began moving to assault the BLM compound, Bundy orders Clark County Sheriff Doug Gillespie to forcibly disarm all federal agents in the area. Bundy says in part:

You disarm those Park service people. You take a pick-up [truck] and I want those arms. We want those arms picked up, don’t we? Call Riley Disposal and go up here to this compound [indicating his ranch house] and we want all of those arms put in that compound taday! We want those arms delivered right here under these flags in one hour!

Gillespie ignores the command. Instead, Gillespie calls the governor, federal officials and others, warning of a potential bloodbath. Conservative talk show hosts such as Fox News’s Sean Hannity have helped whip the militia members into a frenzy, he says, and violence is imminent. Gillespie later says:

We saw all the guns. We knew the potential. These militia guys were very well armed.

Gillespie is worried that an accidental discharge of a weapon would precipitate an all-out firefight.

Cliven Bundy demands that Federal Agents surrender their arms – Bundy Ranch, Nevada

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Militia members trap BLM rangers in motel

Armed militia members use their trucks to block off a Holiday Inn, trapping about 25 BLM rangers inside. According to a source, it is the second time such an incident has occured. Law enforcement officials help persuade the militia members to move their trucks without violence or arrests.

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Beck warns of a second Waco, asks for calm

Conservative talk show host Glenn Beck pleads for both sides in the dispute to remain calm. “Could this become Waco or worse?” he asks. “Yes, if cooler heads do not prevail.”

Some of those so-called “supporters” of mine would scare me as much as Bill Ayers if I believed they were actual supporters. … Know that those of you calling for violence over this Nevada standoff are not supporters or any kind of long-term fan of mine. I know it to be true, no matter what you say, because of this one pesky fact: I have eschewed violence since before I was on FOX News.

11 Apr, 2014
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County commissioner insults Utahns

After discussing  the BLM’s roundup of the Bundy cattles with Darin Bushman, a Piute County, Utah commissioner, Clark County Commissioner Tom Collins posts on Facebook that Utahns are “inbred bastards,” and any of them planning to come to Clark County to support Bundy “better have funeral plans.” On the phone, Collins tells Bushman that Utahns should mind their “own [deleted] business,” and says:

I’m trying to do everything I can to discourage anybody who tells me they’re coming here with loaded guns. I’m going to tell them not to come. … The Bundys want peace. They don’t want any violence going on, so all these gun-packing folks just need to go home.

The Clark County Commission will schedule a meeting to discuss Collins’s remarks.

10 Apr, 2014
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Local police worried about increasing tensions

Local law enforcement is increasingly concerned that the heightening tensions between the 150 or so federal agents and the several hundred militia supporters are escalating to a fever pitch. It is clear, they later say, that Bundy and the militia members are spoiling for a fight, and the heavy-handed presence of armed federal agents during the roundup is exacerbating the situation.

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Doesn’t recognize US government

Bundy tells radio host Dana Loesch that he believes in the “sovereign state of Nevada,” but:

I don’t recognize the United States government as even existing. The federal government has seized Nevada’s sovereignty … they have seized Nevada’s laws and our public land. We have no access to our public land and that is only a little bit of it.

Bundy’s son Ryan tells supporters that the government intends to assume absolute control over the ranch:

Right now it looks like the movie Red Dawn. Right now we’ve got 200 plus federal agents up there in a military compound that they have put together and they’ve got snipers … everybody’s armed, and they’ve been monitoring our ranch with high-tech surveillance equipment … it was never about the grazing fees, it’s about control.

Nevada Citizens Sick & Tired of Passive State Government

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Governor asks for ‘restraint’

Governor Brian Sandoval (R-NV) responds to the violence at the Bundy ranch by issuing a statement asking for calm:

The ability to speak out against government actions is one of the freedoms we all cherish as Americans. Today I am asking all individuals who are near the situation to act with restraint. Although tensions remain high, escalation of current events could have negative, long-lasting consequences that can be avoided.

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Two protesters arrested, charged

Arrest

Two brothers who came to the Bundy ranch to show support for the rancher in his dispute with the BLM are arrested after fighting with federal rangers.  They are arrested after they illegally entered a federal holding pen near the Overton Marina near Bunkerville, where the BLM is holding some of Bundy’s confiscated cattle. Both brothers deny doing anything illegal or violent; they accuse the rangers of threatening them with tasers. Spencer Shillig claims to have not shown “any signs of aggression” towards the rangers and says he was thrown to the ground. His brother was arrested when he came to assist.

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May pay fees to county, not feds

Bundy says that if he chooses to pay his delinquent grazing fees:

I would pay my grazing fees to the proper government, which I would say is Clark County, Nevada. I don’t believe I owe one penny to the United States government. I don’t have a contract with the United States government.

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Implies use of violence

Appearing on conservative radio host Pete Santilli’s talk show, Bundy implies that he and his supporters will use violence against federal officials if they feel it is warranted. Bundy tells Santilli:

I told you that I did the legal thing and the political thing and the media thing and it seems like it’s down to we the people if we’re going to get it done. You know the things like militias. You know, I haven’t called no militia or anything like that, but hey it looks like that’s where we’re at. We got a strong army here, we have to fight, their [unintelligible] to back off. We don’t have our state officials not stepping up and saying no. So until the state people steps up and says no, the county sheriff says no, this thing is going to keep escalating until the point that we are going to have to take our land back and take our rights back and maybe that’s the time we are at in life, I don’t know, it just seemed like we worked our way all the way to this point, now are we going to back off? Or are we going to take it — somebody is going to have to back off. If they’re not, we the people are going to put our boots down and we are going to walk over these people.

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Bundy, Jones: standoff start of new revolution

Appearing on Jones’ radio show, Bundy says the government intends to “take him down,” but he will “do whatever it takes” to fight back. Jones says of the standoff:

This could be how the shot heard round the world happens in this case or others that are happening. If they ever fire on innocent peaceful people trying to take stolen cattle and act like the mercenaries they are, this could turn into 1776 very quickly.

Bundy agrees, saying that he is “not going to stand it, I’m going to stand as long as it takes.”

2014
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Senator: BLM ‘overreaching’

US Senator Dean Heller (R-NV) issues a statement expressing his “great disappointment with the way that this situation is being handled.” Heller says he told BLM director Neil Kornze “very clearly that law-abiding Nevadans must not be penalized by an over-reaching BLM” and adds:

I remain extremely concerned about the size of this closure and disruptions with access to roads, water and electrical infrastructure. I will continue to closely monitor this situation, and urge the BLM to make the necessary changes in order to preserve Nevadans’ constitutional rights.

9 Apr, 2014
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Militia members come to ranch

Militia members from around the nation come to the Bundy ranch in support, some of them armed and saying that they are willing to use violence against federal officials in support of Bundy. Two militia members from Montana say they will use their guns to defend Bundy and his cattle from “tyranny,” but insist they will not fire the first shot. One, who organizes militia, groups says:s:

They all tell me they are in the process of mobilizing as we speak. … We need to be the barrier between the oppressed and the tyrants. Expect to see a band of soldiers. We’re not anti-government. We’re anti-corrupt government.

Other militia members comment:

[W]e provide armed response. They have guns. We need guns to protect ourselves from the tyrannical government.

This is a better education than being in school! I’m glad I brought you. I’m a good mom. They’re learning about the Constitution.

I think it’s bull, and it really made me mad. This isn’t about no turtles or cows.

Federal authorities have some 200 law enforcement officials on the site.

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Militia members post Rules of Engagment

In a video, Nevada militia members tell one another to come to the Bundy ranch, advising them to bring bullhorns, body armor, side arms, pistols, ammunition, “more guns,” and other supplies. They also post their own “rules of engagement” to govern any firefights with law enforcement and federal officials:

Any offensive strike MUST be reserved for Day time!! (we can not hope to compete against their FLIR Systems, Thermal Imaging & Night Vision Capabilities at night) (!! Check Your Fire !! NO FRIENDLY FIRE !!) Hit from behind when ever possible. ! Aim ! and DON’T spray and pray ! Stay focused & calm ! Cover fire, move and give first aid to a brother in need !!

Revolution in Nevada to Save Cliven Bundy *MIRROR*

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Bundy son Tasered

In confrontations on a highway near the Bundy ranch, one of Bundy’s sons, Ammon Bundy, is tasered by a federal official, and Bundy’s sister Margaret Houston is knocked to the ground by other officials, while protesters and family members strike a federal employee with an ATV, kick a K-9 dog and issue verbal threats to officials. No one is injured and no arrests are made. The officials finally leave the area in their ATVs, prompting cheers and yells of:

Get out of our state! BLM go away! BLM go away!

The BLM says that peaceful protests have “crossed into illegal activity” in the last few days, with protesters and family members “blocking vehicles associated with the gather, impeding cattle movement, and making direct and overt threats to government employees.”

Protesters at Scene of Bundy Cattle Roundup Create Disturbance

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Nevada governor criticizes Feds

Governor Brian Sandoval (R-NV) says he is unhappy with the way the BLM is handling the Bundy situation:

No cow justifies the atmosphere of intimidation which currently exists nor the limitation of constitutional rights that are sacred to all Nevadans. The BLM needs to reconsider its approach to this matter and act accordingly.

Sandoval says he is particularly disturbed by the BLM’s decision to establish specific, bounded areas for protests to take place, whichh he describes as “offensive”. A National Park Service spokesperson says roads leading into the area were closed off for safety considerations during the cattle roundup, she says, but the NPS wanted to make sure protesters had a place in the area to gather.

8 Apr, 2014
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BLM agrees not to sell cattle in Utah

Federal officials agree not to auction Bundy’s cattle at a Richfield, Utah auction house after Utah lawmakers oppose the plan. Utah Governor Gary Herbert (R-UT) has previously asked the BLM to keep the Bundy dispute from spilling over into his state. Washington County, Utah Commissioner Alan Gardner says:

We don’t have a dog in this fight, and that’s why we want them to stay in Nevada.

Sevier County, Utah Sheriff Nathan Curtis says he worries about a public outcry if Bundy’s confiscated cattle are sold in Utah. Some of Bundy’s cattle have wandered on the range for so long without proper care or attention that they should be considered “feral,” says Washington County Commissioner Jim Eardley, and pose a health risk to Utah ranchers’ cattle. According to a resolution passed by Eardly and his fellow commissioners:

Feral cattle do not receive proper immunizations or other veterinary care. Feral cattle are likely to interbreed, and interbreeding of cattle creates numerous problems with maintaining a healthy and vibrant herd.

The resolution also asks county residents “to remain peaceful and abide by the law in any protest activities they may engage in regarding this or any other issue.”

6 Apr, 2014
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Bundy son arrested

Arrest

Bundy’s 37-year old son Dave, a rancher, is arrested by federal authorities outside Bundy’s ranch. He is released shortly thereafter. Bundy’s explanation is that he was exercising his constitutional rights on a state highway outside the Bundy ranch, taking photographs of the roundup and peacefully protesting, when he was “roughed up” and arrested. Natalie Collins of the US Attorney’s office says he was cited on misdemeanor charges of refusing to disperse and resisting arrest. BLM spokesperson Kirsten Cannon says Dave Bundy was detained in order to “protect public safety and maintain the peace.” Cannon elaborates:

The Bureau of Land Management and National Park Service support the public’s right to express opinions peacefully and lawfully. However, if an individual threatens, intimidates or assaults another individual or impedes the impoundment, they may be arrested in accordance with local, state or Federal laws.

Dave Bundy explains:

They got on their loudspeaker and said that everyone needed to leave. I stood there and continued to express my First Amendment right to protest, and they approached me and said that if I didn’t leave, they’d arrest me. … Without any further questions, two rangers surrounded and a third one approached me, and they all jumped me, pulling different directions. And then a couple other guys jumped in, and they took me to the ground. One ranger had had his knee on my spine, and the other one was on my head with his knee on the side of my head and his other knee on the back of my neck.

Later, Dave Bundy expands his story to claim that he was “beaten” by the rangers. Bundy’s daughter Bailey Bundy Logue says “martial law” has been imposed:

Wake up America. Look what our ancestors fought for and we need to stand up for that. We need to realize what’s happening. They are taking everything away from us. This isn’t only about one family. This is about everyone’s family. This is martial law and it’s in America and so what are you going to do to have it stay out of America?

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Rancher Association distances

The Nevada Cattlemen’s Association issues a statement distancing itself from the Bundy matter:

Nevada Cattlemen’s Association does not feel it is in our best interest to interfere in the process of adjudication in this matter.

5 Apr, 2014
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Cattle roundup and protest begins

BLM begins rounding up Bundy’s cattle to remove them from federal lands. Reportedly the operation will cost $1 million and last into May. BLM officials say Bundy owes a million in fees, and will also have to pay the round-up expenses. Bundy says he owes only $300,000, and predicts beef shortages in area grocery stores if his cattle are confiscated. Bundy says he “fired the BLM” years ago, and accuses the agency of plotting to kill him. He reiterates his promise to use firearms if necessary to defend his cattle and his “right” to graze them on federal land. Some 100 protesters vocally oppose the roundup. A statement on the BLM website reads in part:

Cattle have been in trespass on public lands in southern Nevada for more than two decades. This is unfair to the thousands of other ranchers who graze livestock in compliance with federal laws and regulations throughout the West. The Bureau of Land Management and the National Park Service have made repeated attempts to resolve this matter administratively and judicially. An impoundment of cattle illegally grazing on public lands is now being conducted as a last resort.

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‘Tortoises can eat manure’

Bundy says no one should worry about the fate of the endangered desert tortoises, dismissing concerns that the cattle eat the grasses and weeds the tortoises need to survive. They can survive with his cattle grazing in their habitat, he says, because they can eat cow manure:

The tortoises eat the cow manure, too. It’s filled with protein.

Desert tortoises are entirely herbivorous, eating grasses, weeds, greens, vegetables and fruit.

2 Apr, 2014
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Bundy asks militia to come to ranch

Bundy issues personal requests for armed militia members to come to his ranch to defend him against the purported threat of federal authorities:

YOU HAVE BEEN ASKING WHAT YOU CAN DO! AND NOW ITS TIME!!!!!! They have my cattle and now [they] have one of my boys. Range war begins tomorrow at Bundy ranch at 9:30 a.m. Bring your signs and horses, and plan to stay as long as you can.

One militia member who responds to Bundy’s call explains:

You feel an obligation as an American. You’ve got an American family who is rightfully on property their family paid the grazing rights on over a hundred and some odd years ago and our government comes in and decides they want to change the rules on that, break the law, really, by changing those rules after a contract’s been signed with their great-great-grandfather — I believe it was — and then run them out? And then use force on their family? And then put the full weight of the American government on them? Shame on them.

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Bundy cattle sales protest

Some 30 protesters line up outside a local auction house to protest any BLM attempt to sell Bundy’s confiscated cattle. The cattle can be sold to pay Bundy’s delinquent grazing fees.

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