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Tuesday, June 2, 2020  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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News >  WA Government

51st state supporters rally in Olympia

Rep. Matt Shea, R-Spokane Valley, far right, and a few dozen supporters of creating a new state out of Eastern Washington who gathered on the Capitol steps Friday. (Ryan Blake / Ryan Blake/The Spokesman-Review)
Rep. Matt Shea, R-Spokane Valley, far right, and a few dozen supporters of creating a new state out of Eastern Washington who gathered on the Capitol steps Friday. (Ryan Blake / Ryan Blake/The Spokesman-Review)
By Ryan Blake The Spokesman-Review

OLYMPIA – Support for Eastern Washington to secede from the rest of the state brought a few dozen people to the state Capitol on Friday, some waving the proposed new state’s blue flags adorned with an osprey and the words “Liberty, Founded in Truth.”

Rep. Matt Shea, R-Spokane Valley, a prime sponsor of a resolution to ask Congress to divide Washington at the Cascade Crest and create the new state of Liberty to the east, warned supporters that “Seattle values” are being pushed on Eastern Washington. He repeated his claims that Democratic lawmakers would be raising taxes and coming for their guns.

Shea also repeated his suggestion from a similar rally a month ago that if West Side lawmakers believe they send too much financial support to people in Eastern Washington, they should let that part of the state go.

“We are the majority,” Shea told the crowd.

Shea introduced the resolution in January, but it failed to get a hearing in its designated House committee before a key deadline and is unlikely to get a vote this session.

He was joined at the rally by other Eastern Washington Republican representatives, including Rep. Bob McCaslin, R-Spokane Valley, the resolution’s cosponsor who mentioned his late father was an early proponent of splitting the state.

Rep. Brad Klippert, R-Kennewick, asked the crowd to pray and fight for Liberty, freedom, truth and justice. He also urged the crowd to grow their numbers by a factor of a thousand by the next rally.

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