The leader of the U.S. Militia Association says civil war could be coming, and with it the need to shoot Idaho legislators.
“Go up and look legislators in the face, because some day you may be forced to blow it off,” Samuel Sherwood said in Boise on March 2, according to the latest edition of the Boise Weekly.
On Friday, Sherwood said the quote was essentially correct.
Sherwood, who leads the Blackfoot-based U.S. Militia Association, has appeared with a few statewide Republican leaders this year. But many GOP officials called his new predictions “frightening” and “uncivilized.”
Sherwood, whose writing has advocated using militias to defy federal law, predicted on Friday that some Idaho lawmakers will betray Idaho and cling to Washington, D.C., when and if civil war erupts. Hence the need to shoot them, he said.
Sherwood has organized militias in several Idaho counties and in other Western states. He says history shows politicians frequently pick the wrong side in a revolution, and today’s politicians are no different.
But Attorney General Alan Lance said Sherwood’s warning “shows a lack of sensitivity and judgment,” and Lt. Gov. Butch Otter condemned the remarks.
Republican Gov. Phil Batt also is leery of Sherwood’s comments.
“He has no problem with people gathering or organizing peacefully under the law, but he does not support anyone who would condone violence,” Batt spokeswoman Amy Kleiner said.
State Rep. Wendy Jaquet, D-Ketchum, called Sherwood’s warning “extremism at its worst.”
But state Schools Superintendent Anne Fox would not publicly question her militia association allies, who manned phone banks and worked vigorously to assure her election.
She declined comment after hearing Sherwood’s remarks.