What Will Senator Fielder and Representative Manzella Do? Ammon Bundy Leaves Their Patriot Movement Because It’s Too Racist

In news that will surely shatter the worldview of Senator Jennifer Fielder and Representative Theresa Manzella, both of whom have been vocal supporters of the Bundy family and their violent anti-government rhetoric and actions, Ammon Bundy announced yesterday that he is leaving the militia movement because it’s too racist and filled with hate against migrants.

From Buzzfeed:

So on Tuesday, Bundy shut down his social media accounts and said he was stepping away from the public light and the “patriot groups” that had gained national attention while supporting the Nevada ranching family. The decision to quit wasn’t an easy one, Bundy said, but the movement’s unforgiving opposition to the migrant caravan and what he called a dangerous and blinding support of President Trump left him with no choice.

“It’s like being in a room full of people in here, trying to teach, and no one is listening,” he said. “The vast majority seemed to hang on to what seemed like hate, and fear, and almost warmongering, and I don’t want to associate myself with warmongers.”

Lest some of those big words confuse the elder stateswomen of the Montana GOP, Bundy went on to compare those who fanatically follow President Trump to those Germans who aided the Nazis:

He then took it a step further, comparing the support of Trump’s base to that of Adolf Hitler’s.

“The time we find ourselves in now that is closest found in history is Germany in the 1930s, and they had a leader that was loved, and it was the same kind of following,” he said. “I don’t want to say there is that extreme similarity, but it very well could go that way, and people just give up their thinking, their rights, and they give up their government because they were so willing to follow him.”

One has to wonder where that leaves Fielder and Manzella. Fielder welcomed the Bundy clan to Montana and has posted countless items like this one on her Facebook page in which she praised Bundy for his lawbreaking in opposition to “Obama’s reign of tyranny.”

It’s hard not to love this post, in which Fielder touts Bundy’s presence at a “Make America Great Again” dinner.

Manzella, who, as this blog has exclusively reported, not only supported the Bundy occupation of the Malheur Wildlife Refuge, but endorsed armed insurrection, has long celebrated the Bundy cause and Ammon Bundy in particular.

With their armed insurrectionist friend turning on the MAGA militia movement and calling them out for being the dishonest racists that so many of them are, where do Fielder and Manzella stand?

Though there has been scant coverage of the connection between Montana Republicans and the anti-government militia movement, perhaps Bundy’s defection will force the press to ask these leaders of the Montana Republican Party if they stand with Trump or with Bundy.

Don’t we deserve to know?

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About the author

Don Pogreba

Don Pogreba has been writing about Montana politics since 2005 and teaching high school English since 2000. He's a former debate coach, and loyal, if often sad, fan of the San Diego Padres and Portland Timbers. He spends far too many hours of his life working at school and on his small business, Big Sky Debate.
His work has appeared in Politico and Rewire.
In the past few years, travel has become a priority, whether it's a road trip to some little town in Montana or a museum of culture in Ísafjörður, Iceland.

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