Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy, who was involved in a tense standoff
with federal rangers in a dispute over grazing rights, didn't hide his racism in an interview with the New York Times
The Bureau of Land Management claims Bundy has let his cattle graze on federal land without paying since 1993, saying he now owes more than $1 million in grazing fees. When federal agents came to confront Bundy about the fees, they were met by an armed militia, a move that has fired up conservatives
Bundy is attempting to use his newfound fame to spread more than just his views on grazing rights, telling the Times he planned to hold a daily news conference. During Saturday's conference, Bunday shared his views on "the Negro":
“I want to tell you one more thing I know about the Negro,” he said. Mr. Bundy recalled driving past a public-housing project in North Las Vegas, “and in front of that government house the door was usually open and the older people and the kids — and there is always at least a half a dozen people sitting on the porch — they didn’t have nothing to do. They didn’t have nothing for their kids to do. They didn’t have nothing for their young girls to do.
“And because they were basically on government subsidy, so now what do they do?” he asked. “They abort their young children, they put their young men in jail, because they never learned how to pick cotton. And I’ve often wondered, are they better off as slaves, picking cotton and having a family life and doing things, or are they better off under government subsidy? They didn’t get no more freedom. They got less freedom.”
Bundy's comments, published Wednesday, led Republican lawmakers who had previously shown their support for his cause to back down
. A spokesman for Sen. Dean Heller (R-Nev.), who had previously hailed Bundy and his supporters as "patriots
," rebuked the rancher's racist remarks, saying the senator “completely disagrees with Mr. Bundy’s appalling and racist statements, and condemns them in the most strenuous way.”
Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), who said he supported Bundy in an interview with Fox News' Greta Van Susteren
earlier this week, denounced Bundy's racist remarks Thursday, Business Insider reports
"His remarks on race are offensive and I wholeheartedly disagree with him," Paul said, according to a spokesman.