Lawmakers react to allegations Rep. Matt Shea discussed violence, surveillance in chats

Lawmakers react to allegations Rep. Matt Shea discussed violence, surveillance in chats

Washington State lawmakers are condeming alleged actions and rhetoric by Spokane Valley representative Matth Shea. An investigative report by The Guardian accused Shea of secretly organizing surveillance and discussing violence against liberal people and groups.

Leaked chats obtained by The Guardian revealed Shea was involved in private talks with some rightwing figures about carrying out surveillance and violent attacks.

On Monday, Governor Jay Inslee released the following the statement:

“There is no place for hate in Washington state, especially in Washington’s Legislature. Rep. Matt Shea’s history of hate has now crossed a new line. He participated in conversations that advocated for violence against those with dissenting opinions. He is actively conspiring with others to surveil and target political activisits. Rep. Shea embodies a strain of extreme ideology that, throughout the decades and into the present, has caused deep harm too people and families. I strongly condemn both his rhetoric and his behavior.”

The Washington State Democratic Party called on the state GOP to expel Shea.

Washington Lt. Governor Cyrus Habib (D) tweeted a reaction Saturday night after the story was first shared. He called on State House Republicans to eject Rep. Shea from their caucus.

Jack Robertson, who is a radio personality, and Anthony Bosworth, were also involved in the messages, according to The Guardian’s report.

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