A U.S. veteran has promised to gather armed troops and “patriots” to arrest lawmakers, including President Barack Obama, who supported the Iran nuclear deal — beginning with Sen. Debbie Stabenow, a Michigan Democrat, in October.
Capitol police are now investigating an open letter written by Jon Ritzheimer, an Arizona resident and a former U.S. Marine, who attracted FBI attention when he organized an anti-Muslim protest rally and a “Draw Mohammed” cartoon contests at a Phoenix mosque in May.
In an open letter posted Monday, Ritzheimer said that he plans to travel from Arizona to Michigan with an armed militia of a “growing number of patriots”, which includes his fellow Marines and Michigan militiamen, to arrest Stabenow for treason because she voted for the nuclear deal with Iran.
Ritzheimer, who identifies himself as an “Oathkeeper” and an “American Patriot who has everything to lose”, stated in the letter that he does not seek fame or fortune but encouraged supporters to donate to his cause so that the group can afford fuel for the journey. More than money, he said, he hopes “fellow patriots” will join his cause as “strength is in our numbers.”
Once the group has arrested Stabenow, the letter states, the militia will then move on and arrest other lawmakers across the country, including “the president who brokered this deal.”
The lawmakers will be arrested for treason “under Article 3 Section 3 of the Constitution,” Ritzheimer wrote.
That section of the Constitution states:
Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying War against them, or in adhering to their Enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort. No Person shall be convicted of Treason unless on the Testimony of two Witnesses to the same overt Act, or on Confession in open Court.
The Congress shall have power to declare the Punishment of Treason, but no Attainder of Treason shall work Corruption of Blood, or Forfeiture except during the Life of the Person attainted.
“We have chosen [Stabenow] as our first target due to our strong ties with the Michigan State Militia and their lax gun laws that will allow us to operate in a manner necessary for an operation like this,” the letter said.
“We do not seek violence but we will be armed and ready to defend and uphold our oath to the Constitution. There is no reason these people can’t be held accountable and have their day in court,” Ritzheimer wrote.
He explained that he has notified law enforcement about these intentions, and plans to cooperate with them “and try to keep this as smooth as possible so we don’t have another ‘Shot Heard Round The World’ situation,” which is referring to the first shots fired that started the American Revolutionary War in 1775.
“If these people are innocent, then it should be proven in court. But there is overwhelming evidence stacked up against them that says otherwise,” he added.
In a nearly 20-minute video on YouTube, Ritzheimer further detailed his plans.