Thursday, March 23, 2023

A new Trump-bound PAC has entered the right-wing war against Biden’s conservation goals

A new political action committee run by two former Trump administration officials is marking its territory campaign full of propaganda Against the Biden administration’s goal of conserving 30% of America’s land and water by 2030, informally known as “30×30”.

Sagebrush Rebellion Pac, named after the anti-government sagebrush rebellion movement, which began in the 1970s and sought to remove the land from federal control, quietly unfolded late last year. it is Deeper ties to Trumpworld joined a growing coalition of right-wing organizations and elected officials who are sowing fear in rural communities with false, conspiratorial claims about how Biden’s government can seize private property or gain control of private land to meet the 30×30 target. plans to use deceptive tactics.

On its cowboy-heavy website, Sagebrush Rebellion is “composed of grassroots fighters who do not see Washington’s inner circles” and says it is “committed to removing incompetent and corrupt leaders from the political process.” Its priorities include dismantling federal land management agencies and transferring control of federal lands to the states, as well as a laundry list of fossil fuel-focused energy policies that look like something pulled directly from an oil and gas trading group’s website. Looks like

PAC’s donation page urges people to “help us start the rebellion.” It sells T-shirts, mugs and other merchandise featuring a cow skull and the phrase “Let’s Go Brandin’,” a cowboy twist on a popular conservative phrase that means “Fuck Joe Biden.” Internet archives reveal that in 2015 the website URL that the Sagebrush Rebellion PAC is now using is using a post titled “Simple Wisdom of Cliven Bundy,” the infamous Nevada rancher who charged federal agents with unpaid grazing charges in 2014. But led to an armed standoff.

As HuffPost reported this story, Pac and a film company she’s working with on a documentary purged her social media accounts of specific posts in exactly the order that HuffPost inquired about her. Had it.

As of March 31, the fledgling PAC had received only $200 in contributions, according to its most recent filing with the Federal Election Commission. But it has recently started to tie up with some of the biggest players in the 30×30 anti-push. PAC sponsored last month’s “STOP 30×30 Summit” in Lincoln, Nebraska. On Twitter, the group parroted the anti-30×30 movement’s broad, evidence-free claim that the 30×30 target is a federal “land grab” in disguise.

The group is based in Casper, Wyoming, and is led by Rockefeller successor and Donald Trump loyalist Katherine P. O’Neill, daughter of prominent Republican donor George O’Neill Jr., He worked at both the State Department and the US Agency for International Development during the Trump administration and is a regular contributor to the far-right news outlet Newsmax.

Christian Whitten, a former adviser to the Trump and George W. Bush administrations, is the PAC’s director of communications.

O’Neill and Whitten have both pedaled baseless The 2020 election claimed fraud and questioned the legitimacy of Biden’s presidency. On a leaked call with USAID staff two days after Biden was declared the winner, O’Neill declared that “the election is still taking place” and that “the Electoral College has not yet voted.” And on January 6, 2021, as a crowd of Trump supporters stormed the Capitol in an attempt to thwart the certification of the 2020 election, O’Neill announced his alliance with Trump on Twitter and denounced those who did not stand behind them.

As well as sponsoring last month’s “Stop 30×30 Summit,” Sagebrush Rebellion PAC has teamed up with an Arizona-based production company, Jay Infinite Digital Media, to produce a documentary of some sort, featuring key figures from the anti-30×30 movement.

In a now-deleted post on Instagram, Jay Infinity shared photos from the production company and Sagebrush Rebellion Pac filming at last month’s event. “An amazing production day with @sagebrushrebellion on their latest doc project,” read the post, which includes photos from the filmmaking and an interview with Margaret Byfield, executive director of American Stewards of Liberty, a fringe right-wing property rights in Texas groups were involved. Who organized the summit and is leading the fight against 30×30. jackson carter Tagged in a post by sagebrush rebellion.

The post also included Sen. Kevin Cramer (RN.D.), one of the summit’s keynote speakers, and Utah State Representative Phil Lyman (R), who was nominated in 2015 for leading federal anti-land protesters on an illegal ATV ride. was convicted. On public lands that were out of range for off-road vehicles. Trump later waived Lyman’s federal misdemeanor sentence.

J Infinite deleted the Instagram post within hours of contacting HuffPost’s Sagebrush Rebellion PAC about it.

A watchdog group, Accountable.US, was the first to alert HuffPost to the Sagebrush Rebellion PAC and its upcoming documentary project.

“When it comes to the American Stewards of Liberty, you can almost hear black helicopters circling,” Jordan Schreiber, energy and environment director for Accountable.US, told HuffPost in an email. He said the group’s leaders compared 30×30 to Nazi Germany and Holodomor, a human-caused famine that struck Ukraine during the regime of Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin, resulting in the deaths of an estimated 3.9 million people.

“We are against it in the fight to preserve American land and water for the enjoyment of generations to come,” Schreiber said.

The documentary project appears to be far and away the biggest task for this little-known film organization. Reviews of J Infinity’s website indicate that its specialty is shooting and taking pictures of people with guns and guns. Its two main customers are tactical training facilities in Arizona, one of which is also served by J Infinity owner Jacob Fuchs.

fuchs appears to have any affiliation or affinity with boogaloo boisan often violent far-right, anti-government movement Who has warned of a future civil war and also plotted. Members often wear Hawaiian shirts and military-style gear.

Last June, Jay Anant released a nearly three-minute slow motion Video Titled “Da Bois,” Featuring Fuchs and two others in tactical gear shoot assault-style rifles and handguns and clenched fists on the song “Sh-Boom” from The Chords. The vest worn by Fuchs and another person has patches that read “Boog Crew.” one and the same Video The title posted on the company’s YouTube channel is “Boogaloo Crew Pilot”.

Two days after the anti-30×30 summit in Nebraska, Sagebrush Rebellion posted a photo on Twitter that read, “Behind the scenes…stay on!”

Screenshot Of A Now-Deleted Post On The Sagebrush Rebellion Pac'S Twitter Page.
Screenshot of a now-deleted post on the Sagebrush Rebellion PAC’s Twitter page.

Twitter/Sagebrush Rebellion Pac

Neither Jay Infinity nor Sagebrush Rebellion Pac responded to HuffPost’s requests for comment about the documentary they’re working on or the production company’s boogaloo-themed video.

A series of emails to Joshua Abernathy, whose address is listed in the PAC’s filings with the FEC, elicited only a short reply: “I’m no longer working on that project.”

After HuffPost reached out to J Infinite, the company removed its Boogaloo-themed content from YouTube, took down its website, and made its Instagram page private. And soon after HuffPost asked if the person pictured in the Hawaiian shirt was Fuchs, Sagebrush Rebellion took down the post and blocked this reporter on Twitter.

It’s not clear whether Fuchs and his company are involved in the project, from filming boogaloo-themed targeting practices to a documentary for PACs run by former Trump administration officials, or the American Stewards of Liberty.

Byfield did not respond to HuffPost’s request for comment.

Margaret Byfield, Executive Director Of The American Stewards Of Liberty, Speaks At A 30X30 Anti-Information Session In Lee County, New Mexico In July 2021.  His Texas-Based Nonprofit Is Leading The Charge Against The Biden Administration'S Conservation Target.
Margaret Byfield, executive director of the American Stewards of Liberty, speaks at a 30×30 anti-information session in Lee County, New Mexico in July 2021. His Texas-based nonprofit is leading the charge against the Biden administration’s conservation target.

Black Over/Hobbs News-Sun

American stewards are largely responsible for the 30×30 false narrative about government land grab. The organization was formed in 2009, but has its roots in the anti-government sagebrush insurgency movement. One of its pioneers, Stewards of the Range, was founded in 1992 to protect Byfield’s father, Nevada rancher and sagebrush rebel Wayne Hedge, who fought A sort of prequel to the Bundy standoff that spawned an extremist militia movement—with the Forest Service on public land without permission for years.

Byfield has worked to distance his organization from the Sagebrush Rebellion and the Bundy family. In a June 2021 email to a Nebraska reporter, which HuffPost obtained as part of a public records request, Byfield wrote that his group “was founded in the 1990s, so we can’t relate to the Sagebrush Rebellion.” were” and his father “was not part of the Sagebrush Rebellion.” She also said that the American steward was never associated with Bundy.

Yet Byfield allowed a PAC under the name of the Sagebrush Rebellion to sponsor the movement’s anti-union land ideology and to film a 30×30 summit which he called “the most important conference” organized by his group.

and Trent Loos, a Nebraska rancher and radio show host who served on Trump’s agriculture advisory committee and now helps American Stewards with their anti-30×30 campaign, armed Malhur National Wildlife with Bundy’s son, Ammon Bundy. Conducted a sympathetic interview during the acquisition. Asylum in 2016.

In closing remarks at last month’s summit in Nebraska, which HuffPost obtained a recording of, Byfield took a moment to thank and recognize the event’s sponsors.

“Katherine O’Neill, sagebrush rebellion,” Byfield told the audience. “Are you guys doing any interviews with Katherine? She’s set up in the media room.”


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