Congressman Allegedly Declares Civil War Has Begun

Local leader of the right-wing militant Oath Keepers group, says Arizona Republican Congressman Paul Gosar told his organization that the US was in a civil war: 'We just haven't started shooting yet.'

Rep. Paul Gosar (R-AZ) speaks to Trump supporters gathering during a protest about the early results of the 2020 presidential election, in front of the Maricopa County Tabulation and Election Center (MCTEC), in Phoenix, Arizona, on Nov. 5, 2020. (Photo by Jim Urquhart/via Reuters)

According to the leader of the Yavapai County chapter of the Oath Keepers, an extremist militant, anti-government militia — that has had at least 10 members of the group identified as participants in the Jan. 6 attack on the US Capitol — Rep. Paul Gosar (R-AZ) met with his group, and declared the United States was already embroiled in a Civil War (see video below).

Jim Arroyo, who describes himself as the Head of the Chino Oath Keepers and Yavapai County Preparedness Team, discussed the encounter with Gosar in a video that was titled, "The Coming Civil War? Part 1." Arroyo says in the video, posted on Nov. 22, 2020, "We did a meeting a couple of years ago where our elected representative from Washington Paul Gosar came out and we asked him flat out at that time, 'Do you think we’re heading into a civil war?'"

According to Arroyo, who says he is a former Army Ranger and has 42 years of experience as a custom gunsmith, Rep. Gosar was adamant that the US was already at war. "His response to the group was just flat out, 'We’re in it. We just haven’t started shooting at each other yet'," said Arroyo.

Arroyo expounded on what he says Gosar told everyone, and gave his own theory about how the US is "in the beginning phases of a full-scale, kinetic civil war [provoked by a] communist insurrection." Arroyo continues to explain,"What we are witnessing in the United States right now is a Communist takeover, it's an insurgency. You need to prepare to defend yourselves, your families, and your neighborhoods." 

“We believe, that we are wholeheartedly already underway with a Civil War in this country; we wrote a war game out and we studied this years ago and we’ve been prepping our teams for this exact scenario, probably going on five years now — now that it’s actually upon us, we’re seeing more and more evidence…we’re going to be witnessing more and more problems.” — Jim Arroyo, less than two months before the US Capitol riot

This is hardly the first time an alt-right activist has claimed to work with Gosar to facilitate Trump’s agenda of attempting to overturn the election. Ali Alexander, who organized the “Stop the Steal” movement, which is actively contesting the outcome of the general election, and claiming the vote counts were rigged, is now alleging that he was significantly helped in his initiative by sitting Representatives Paul Gosar (R-AZ), Andy Biggs (R-AZ) and Mo Brooks (R-AL).

Alexander claims that the three Congressmen were directly involved in concocting a plan to put “maximum pressure on Congress while they were voting,” and to stop Congress from formally certifying the election result count which declared Joe Biden the winner of the race. 

Alexander also claims that the four of them “schemed up” to create the the Jan. 6 rally that led to the attempted coup at the US Capitol Building. It is clear, from Alexander’s statements on social media, that he intended for things to get violent, and he tweeted that he was “willing to give [his] life for this fight” on December 8, just weeks before the insurrection. The next day, the Arizona Republican Party tweeted out the following statement above Ali Alexander’s tweet exclaiming that he was ready to die for Donald Trump with the following statement: “He is. Are you?”

Gosar also attended and spoke at a rally, at the Phoenix State Capitol Building, that Alexander organized after the 2020 election to demand the results be overturned. Rep. Biggs also recorded a video for the event. But, a spokesperson for Biggs told CNN that the congressman recorded the video following a request from Gosar’s staff, and Biggs still maintains that he has never met Alexander. Gosar continues to remain silent on all of his actions that could incriminate him in the attack on Jan 6 and afterward.

Rep. Paul Gosar (R-AZ) objects to the certification of the electoral votes for his home state of Arizona while Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), left, looks on during the Jan. 6 joint session of Congress to certify the Presidential Election results. Fellow Arizona Rep Andy Biggs, also in red necktie, is seated behind Gosar and to the right. (Photo by Win McNamee/via Getty Images)

There is too much proof of Gosar’s involvement with Alexander, Stop the Steal and the Oath Keepers for him to deny any of it, and he has decided not to comment on the many allegations. Last summer, a photo of Gosar posing with a purported member of the Proud Boys and standing near a person wearing Oath Keepers clothing, emerged on social media. Dave Gosar, one of Rep. Paul Gosar’s brothers, also confirmed that his brother has a close affiliation with the militant group, telling The New York Times that his brother is "twisted up so tight with the Oath Keepers it's not even funny." 

Nearly 150 Republican House members supported Trump’s facetious claims that the election had been stolen and 126 signed their names to an amicus brief, in support of a lawsuit meant to overturn the election results. Gosar stands out in this crowd of conspirators, as one of the more blatant and obvious in the events leading up to the insurgency, but he is joined by a handful of sitting members of Congress with proven ties to extremist groups.

Rep. Andy Biggs (R-AZ) greets then President Donald Trump at the international airport in Yuma, Arizona, on Aug. 18, 2020, while Trump points out that Biggs is wearing a “MAGA” mask. (Photo by Brendan Smialowski/via Getty Images)

In addition to Gosar, Biggs and Brooks, other Republicans have been actively promoting the conspiracy theory ideology that lead to a mob of insurgents overtaking the US Capitol Building. Representative Lauren Boebert (R-CO) is closely connected with radical militia groups, including the Three Percenters, an extremist offshoot of the gun rights movement, that had at least one member who entered the Capitol on Jan. 6.

Rep. Mikie Sherrill (D-NJ) issued a video statement via Facebook immediately after the Jan. 6 attack, describing “reconnaissance” tours that involved her colleagues escorting groups on suspicious tours of the building leading up to the attack. While Sherrill declined to confirm who she was talking about specifically, photos emerged on social media of Rep. Boebert posing with people, who were involved in the riots, in front of the US Capitol, and Rep. Steve Cohen (D-TN) specifically named Boebert, saying he witnessed her giving a tour leading up to the insurrection.

Boebert also sent out tweets during the active riot in the Capitol Building that might have been intended to aid insurgents and direct them in locating Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s (D-CA) sheltering location. Boebert first announced on Twitter that the lawmakers had been moved to the House chambers. She then tweeted out that the "Speaker has been removed from the chambers." Rep. Eric Schatz (D-HI) accused Boebert of nefarious intent when he tweeted out that members had all been explicitly instructed by Capitol security not to disclose their locations publicly to anyone, not even family.

During the ensuing riot at the US Capitol Building on Jan. 6, that interrupted the certification of the Presidential Election results, Rep. Ruben Gallego (D-AZ) jumped up on a chair on the floor of the US House of Representatives to direct traffic, as staffers and members wrestled with safety hoods from under the desks. (Photo by Bill O'Leary/via Getty Images)

Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) has also actively promoted QAnon conspiracy theories, and she has appeared at rallies with militia groups. After coming under intense scrutiny last week for her associations and promotion of such radical groups, Green began to delete incriminating posts from her social media accounts that could tie her to the attack on the Capitol. Greene also speculated on Facebook in 2018, that California wildfires might have been started by lasers from space, which further propelled a theory pushed by QAnon followers.

Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) attended an event in October of last year, where members of the Proud Boys white supremacy extremist organization, were not only present, but provided security for the event. In addition to Trump giving the group a “shout-out” during a nationally televised presidential debate, the Proud Boys are currently being investigated in connection with the attack on the US Capitol by the FBI. Last week, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) issued a National Terrorism Advisory System (NTAS) Bulletin due to a heightened threat from domestic terrorists like the Proud Boys.

QAnon conspiracy theorist and newly elected Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) is stoped at US Capitol security to be searched outside the House of Representatives chamber on Jan 12, 2021, following the riot at the US Capitol a week earlier. Greene wears a mask that reads, molon labe, which is a Greek phrase meaning “come and take them” that the right wing uses as an anti–gun control slogan. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/via Getty Images)

As the evidence of elected leaders and members of the Republican Party colluding with domestic terrorists continues to mount, 33 Democratic members of the House of Representative have demanded a complete investigation into fellow Republican lawmakers who may have played a role in attempting to overtake the government. While this demand was officially made merely a week after the events of Jan. 6, the public has yet to be substantially updated on the progress or status of any investigation.

“Members of the group that attacked the Capitol seemed to have an unusually detailed knowledge of the layout of the Capitol Complex,” the formal investigation demand letter states, “Given the events of January 6, the ties between these groups inside the Capitol Complex and the attacks on the Capitol need to be investigated.” I would add that some kind of status update on the progress of any investigations of members of Congress be made public, especially given the increased outlandish behavior by some in Congress recently. Those who are suspected of aiding and abetting the insurgents at the US Capitol need to be publicly faced with the proposition that they are now under investigation — even if only to temper their current brazen and inexcusable behavior.


Amee Vanderpool writes the SHERO Newsletter and is an attorney, published author, contributor to newspapers and magazines and analyst for BBC radio. She can be reached at or follow her on Twitter @girlsreallyrule.


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