Anti-government activist Ammon Bundy files to run for Idaho governor

He and others were arrested in 2016 after occupying a national refuge in Oregon.

May 25, 2021, 2:18 PM

Ammon Bundy, an anti-government activist and one of the leaders of a 2016 armed occupation on a wildlife refuge in Oregon, has filed paperwork to run for governor of Idaho.

Bundy was a part of a group of militia members occupying Malheur National Wildlife Refuge for 41 days in 2016 as an act of protest against the arrest of two other men accused of setting fires on federal lands.

An armed standoff with federal authorities resulted in one fatality. Bundy, who along with others, was acquitted of any charges, said he believed the pair of ranchers were victims of federal overreach.

Members of the armed anti-government militia group occupying the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge headquarters are seen on the sixth day of the occupation of the federal building in Burns, Ore., Jan. 7, 2016.
Cem Ozdel/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images, FILE

In 2014, Bundy and his father, Cliven Bundy, a Nevada rancher, were involved in another armed standoff with federal agents trying to confiscate Cliven Bundy's cattle for his refusing to pay fees for grazing on public land. Charges were dismissed.

Ammon Bundy is currently not allowed in the state Capitol after being arrested for trespassing there and resisting and obstructing police in August 2020, according to the Idaho Statesman. In March 2021, he was arrested for failing to attend his trial on those trespassing charges, instead protesting against mask mandates in front of the courthouse.

Bundy filed election paperwork as a Republican, according to the Idaho secretary of state’s office. The original campaign paperwork listed Bundy as the treasurer, but the Idaho secretary of state's office tweeted after his filing that a treasurer must be a registered voter -- indicating that Bundy is not registered in Idaho.

Bundy filed the paperwork on May 21, although he said he will make an official announcement on June 19, according to the Idaho Press.

If he runs, he will join Idaho’s Lt. Gov. Janice McGeachin in the GOP primary against Gov. Brad Little, after McGeachin spoke out against Little’s coronavirus restrictions.

Idaho Gov. Brad Little gestures during a press conference in Boise, Idaho, Oct. 1, 2020. Little signed legislation in May 10, 2021, aimed at thwarting a half-dozen executive actions by President Joe Biden to combat gun violence.
Darin Oswald/AP, FILE

Little faced a potential recall election last August, though the effort ultimately failed.

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