Ammon Bundy Files for Republican Governor Candidate in Idaho, but is Banned from the State Capitol.
Ammon Bundy, an anti-government activist, has filed to run for governor of Idaho in the Republican primary, despite his continued prohibition from visiting the state capitol.
Bundy is perhaps best known for leading the 2016 occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge in Harney County, Oregon, in protest of the federal government's control of public lands. He was arrested and charged with federal crimes, but was subsequently acquitted.
Bundy was barred from visiting the Idaho State Capitol in Boise for a year on August 26, 2020, after being arrested twice in two days on charges of trespassing and resisting and obstructing officers as part of a protest against state legislatures debating COVID-19 pandemic-related measures.
According to The Idaho Statesman, Bundy filed the necessary paperwork with the Idaho secretary of state on Friday to begin collecting donations for a gubernatorial campaign.
Brad Little, the state's Republican governor, has not announced whether he will seek re-election in 2022, despite the fact that he is eligible.
Bundy returned to the Idaho State Capitol on April 8, 2021, despite his ban, and was arrested twice in the span of two hours. He was initially arrested and removed from the building on suspicion of trespassing, but reportedly returned after being released on bail from that arrest. He was later arrested for the second time.
Bundy's most recent arrests mark his fourth and fifth in Boise since August 2020. According to the Associated Press, a pending trespassing charge stemming from the August incident is being heard in court (AP). Bundy is defending himself and has entered a not guilty plea.
Bundy and another man, Aaron Schmidt, were scheduled to appear in court on May 15 on the trespassing charge, but they attempted to enter the Ada County Courthouse without wearing masks, as required, and thus were not present when the hearing began. As a result, the judge issued a warrant for their arrest for failure to appear, and the two were apprehended outside the courthouse.
Lt. Governor Janice McGeachin has also declared her candidacy for the top job in Idaho. According to The Oregonian, there are four additional Republicans in the race: Jeff Cotton, Edward Humphreys, Lisa Marie, and Cody Usabel. No Democrat has yet declared a candidacy in the deeply red state.
McGeachin reportedly clashed with Little over the state's COVID laws and attended an earlier this year mask burning rally at the Capitol. Little did not enact a statewide mask requirement.
"Everything that makes Idaho great is under attack, and with radical leftists now in control of Congress and the White House, your governor must be on the front lines every day defending our individual liberties, state sovereignty, and traditional conservative values," McGeachin stated on May 19.
The Bundy family has been contacted by Newsweek for comment.