A Feb. 6 rally against carbon cap legislation drew a convoy of tractor-trailers and logging trucks to the Capitol in Salem. State Sen. Kim Thatcher (R-Keizer) used the Timber Unity rally to announce her candidacy for Oregon secretary of state.
Also present? Proponents of several conspiracy theories and fringe movements.
Protesters came dressed in the regalia of the Three Percenters, a right-wing anti-government militia, and carried signs decrying government efforts to increase childhood vaccination rates. "The only vaccine Oregon needs is one to prevent cap and trade," one sign read.
Protesters also unveiled a banner with the slogan "Where we go one, we go all." That's a motto of the conspiracy theory QAnon, which contends without evidence that the Democratic Party is connected to a child sex trafficking ring.
Former state Rep. Julie Parrish (R-West Linn) says Timber Unity does not support such messaging. "We're very clear with our folks: We're here for one issue, and one issue alone," she tells WW. "The Capitol steps are a free speech zone, but they're not part of our group."