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Montana Human Rights Network condemns Bozeman rep for views

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Kerry White (right), Bozeman's state representative, with Montana Governor Steve Bullock. Photo Credit: Facebook / Kerry White Kerry White (right), Bozeman's state representative, with Montana Governor Steve Bullock. Photo Credit: Facebook / Kerry White

A Montana representative is being rebuked by a human rights group for his role in an upcoming conference and support of Cliven Bundy.

Kerry White, a Republican from Bozeman, is speaking at the controversial "A ‘New’ Code of the West" conference. Other speakers include Ammon Bundy.

The Helena-based Montana Human Rights Network says they're concerned that White and others intend the conference to be “anti-government,” “anti-Indian,” and “promoting an array of extremist conspiracy theories.”

The Montana Human Rights Network calls out White specifically:

“White subscribes to a one-world government conspiracy that wealthy elites (in White’s version it’s environmentalists) are taking over the world through the United Nations and conservation groups.”

Bozeman’s state representative, Republican Kerry White (Rep. HD 64), is expected to lead a lecture at the event entitled “Doc Holiday: When You Make a Promise, Keep It.”

White says he was invited to the conference months ago to speak on the health impacts of wildfire smoke, and rebuked the Montana Human Rights Network for its “vicious character assignation [sic]” against him and “efforts to distort and discredit my service and character.” White also stated he sees “no indication this conference is anti government or anti Native American.”

A founder of the group responsible for the conference, “This West is OUR West,” told the Daily Interlake that the group does not consider themselves to be “alt-right” or “right-wing radicals.”

The conference will include a speech by Ammon Bundy, a leader of the high-profile 2016 armed occupation of Malheur National Wildlife Refuge in Oregon. The occupation resulted in the death of one man. Bundy also took part in an armed occupation in Nevada in 2014 to defend his father, rancher Cliven Bundy.

White posted on his Facebook page at the time that he would be going down to Nevada to “stand with Mr. Bundy.” The elder Bundy initiated the standoff after refusing to pay $1.2 million in fees or show up for court – both punishments were handed to Bundy after he continually allowed his cattle to graze on public lands that had been set aside as a “protected tortoise habitat” (a result of the dropping desert tortoise population in the area).

The Daily Interlake reports that the conference includes lectures by Bundy entitled “The Deep State – Is It Impacting Western States?,” “Agenda 21 and How It Affects Us in the West,” “Public vs. Private Property,” “Federal Indian Policy and Montana Voter Fraud,” “Bureaucratic Overreach and Standing Tall,” and more.

As of press time those lecture titles were not found on the group’s website. It’s unclear whether they were taken down or simply available elsewhere. Bundy’s speech, according to the “This West is OUR West” website, is called “Defeating the Outlaws: How the West was Won.”

Several groups, including the Montana Wilderness Association, Montana Wildlife Federation, Montana Human Rights Network, and Love Lives Here are planning a protest event in Whitefish for the same day, Saturday, October 13.

White is up for reelection in Bozeman on November 6, 2018. He is being challenged by Democrat Denise Albrecht.

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