It was only a matter of time before 3 Percent of Idaho, described by The Oregonian as a "group of gun-toting Idahoans," arrived at the occupation of Eastern Oregon's Malheur National Wildlife Refuge. It was also only a matter of time before the occupiers asked the 3 Percenters to leave, telling the Idahoans, "We don't need that. We don't want it and we're asking you to leave."
Late last year, 3 Percent of Idaho spokesman Chris McIntire told Boise Weekly the media's portrayal of the Gem State group is inaccurate.
"They want to paint us as white supremacists, they want to paint us as racists, they want to paint us as these bitter clingers to an archaic document that don't want to move forward, that are culturally closed off, that are intellectually limited. And that's not true."
This weekend, 3 Percenters joined similar organizations from Oregon and Washington to form a coalition of what they called "the Pacific Patriot Network" and showed up at the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge near Burns, Ore., where armed occupiers were entering the second week of a standoff.
The Oregonian reports that the coalition emerged from their vehicles wearing military attire and bulletproof vests, and armed with rifles and sidearms, in hopes of standing guard around the compound. Soon after they arrived and their offer was rebuffed by the armed occupiers, the coalition drove away.
Meanwhile, public officials from the mayor of Burns to Oregon's governor, continue to urge the occupiers to pack up and leave, too.