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Washington Rep. Matt Shea decries finding of investigation

January 17, 2020 GMT
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Gun-rights supporters rally on the steps of the Washington Capitol, in Olympia, Wash., Friday, Jan. 17, 2020. Several Republican lawmakers spoke at the rally decrying gun control measures being considered by the Legislature this year. (AP Photo/Rachel La Corte)
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Gun-rights supporters rally on the steps of the Washington Capitol, in Olympia, Wash., Friday, Jan. 17, 2020. Several Republican lawmakers spoke at the rally decrying gun control measures being considered by the Legislature this year. (AP Photo/Rachel La Corte)

Washington Rep. Matt Shea spoke to hundreds of supporters on the Capitol steps Friday decrying the findings of report that says he participated in domestic terrorism against the United States.

The Seattle Times reported that Shea, who was speaking to about 500 people gathered for an annual gun-rights rally, said the findings and allegations are false and slammed the investigation as a “Marxist smear campaign.”

His appearance comes as House Democrats consider whether to hold hearings to expel the Spokane Valley Republican from the Legislature in response to a House-commissioned investigation report that was released last month.

That 108-page report concluded, among other things, that Shea participated in and planned domestic terrorism against the United States with involvement in three standoffs against the government, including the one at Eastern Oregon’s Malheur National Wildlife Refuge.

House Republicans suspended Shea from their caucus after the report’s release and removed him from his committee assignments.

And the Washington State Patrol confirmed Friday afternoon it is investigating alleged violent threats made on a Facebook post that discussed House Republican Leader J.T. Wilcox, of Yelm, who suspended Shea from the GOP caucus.

State Patrol spokesman Chris Loftis said troopers are following up on the comments.

House Speaker Laurie Jinkins, D-Tacoma, said she has called upon the firm that conducted the investigation, the Rampart Group, to release the report’s supporting documents to the House so lawmakers in both parties can review them.

Shea has dismissed repeated calls for his resignation, and after his speech at the rally said he plans to run for re-election this year.