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Cliven Bundy Stumps For Statehood

Cliven Bundy has left the ranch.

He will speak this afternoon in Elko at an event hosted by the Nevada Committee for Full Statehood, which is one stop on an informal speaking tour.

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The Washington Post characterizedBundy's appearances as part of a campaign for third-party candidates such as Russell Best, a member of the Independent American Party who is running for Congressional District 4.

But Bundy himself denies that he is stumping for any candidates.

"I'm not really supporting a party," he said. "I support good candidates who believe in the Constitution."

Bundy switched his registration from Republican to Independent American earlier this year. He said he was frustrated by the lack of support he received from Republican lawmakers during the Bunkerville standoff in April.

The Independent American Party of Nevada believes the federal government should relinquish control of federal land to state of Nevada, that currency should revert to the gold standard, and that most federal regulations are unconstitutional.

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Russell Best talked with Bundy and his wife during the standoff, but he didn't come to the ranch. Nonetheless, he did support the militia presence in Bunkerville, and said it might have prevented another Waco or Ruby Ridge.

"I don't think anybody should have pulled weapons," he said. "But I do support the Second Amendment. That's what it's there for -- in case everything else fails."

The Nevada Committee for Full Statehood is sponsoring today's speaking event, and its tenets will sound familiar to anyone who followed the Bundy saga in April. The group believes the BLM has no law enforcement power in Nevada, and they have supported several ranchers who have had cattle confiscated by the agency.

But Bundy said that he had little hope that things would change in this election cycle. The two races he cares about most are for governor and Clark County Sheriff, and neither has a candidate that supports his extreme views of state sovereignty.

"For sheriff, we have two candidates I don't agree with, and we've got a governor who isn't doing anything," he said. "All I can do is express the fact that I'm unhappy."
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