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Although it's unknown how many people belong to the top-secret paramilitary groups scattered around Colorado Springs and across the country, they all have one thing in common: a belief that they eventually will have to fight troops of the United Nations in the streets of their own towns in order to remain free.
To do so, they need guns.
That need binds these groups together. That, and talk shows. In Colorado Springs, the most popular conservative radio station is KVOR-FM, a station that follows Rush Limbaugh's daily show with its own "On the Carpet," hosted by Chuck Baker. Once a week Baker broadcasts his show live from the Monument Gun Shop outside of Colorado Springs.
Baker attracts a number of guests who are popular on the Patriot circuit. In August he interviewed Linda Thompson, who hyped the "retake the government" day originally slated for September 19.
On his September 7 show, Baker pondered "what we're going to do" if the election didn't change things enough. When he brought up "armed revolution," caller "Jacques" replied, "The problem is, who do we shoot? Other than Kennedy, Foley and Mitchell, the others are borderline traitors. You've got to get your ammo. We've got to do it as an orchestrated militia."
After Baker referred to Clinton and his administration as a "bunch of little creeps," a man named "Frank" called. He talked about how the cells--the six-man subsets of militia groups--needed to cooperate, even though they couldn't know which people belonged to which cell for security reasons. "But it's going to have to be out of togetherness against the Campbells, Schroeders, Mitchells and so forth," Frank added. "It's going to have to be done nationwide."
Baker then offered a plug for the Save America Militia in Calhan, mentioning that "apparently that baby has already grown by great lengths just in the last eight or ten days." He gave out the contact number over the radio.
According to KVOR general manager Donn Seidholz, Baker was at a convention of talk-show hosts in St. Louis when he first heard about the shooting outside the White House on Saturday, October 29. "He was frantic to get home," Seidholz says. "He was concerned about his family and the news media inundating him."
Seidholz says the station got Baker on the first available flight out the next day.
Baker says he was still in St. Louis on Monday, October 31, and didn't know about the shooting until his wife called and told him, "They're blaming you." However, a prominent Republican claims she saw Baker at the Colorado Springs airport on the afternoon of October 30, and he told her he wouldn't be "on the air for a few days because the feds want to go through my stuff and interview me."
Although Baker didn't return calls asking about the discrepancy, Seidholz says he "might have been wrong" about Baker returning to Colorado Springs the Sunday after the shooting. Either way, Baker definitely wasn't on the air Monday, October 31, which Seidholz says the host took as a "vacation day."
Early in November a Colorado Springs television station reported that federal authorities investigating the Duran case had taken all logs from talk-radio stations in the area. Both Baker and Seidholz deny that the FBI has contacted them or asked for their tapes, but Baker says he was told "that in a conversation with the Secret Service, Duran said he listened to Rush Limbaugh and Chuck Baker." When he called Limbaugh's office to warn them, Baker says, they said they'd "been expecting it."
Seidholz says he had "ten calls about the same rumor," suggesting that they could have been part of a conspiracy. "It's almost like it's orchestrated," he adds. "It's the last thing Rush wants. It would give the feds an excuse to go after him."
Two weeks after Duran's arrest, Baker left his show, claiming that pressure from the news media and liberals blaming him for Duran's action was causing him to have a nervous breakdown.
But Baker is already back on the air.
The talk-show host and two Colorado Springs politicians--one victorious and one defeated November 8--are the local heroes of the Patriots. "We're in a battle to recover the country," says Charlie Duke, who was just elected to the Colorado Legislature. "I, for one, am ready to stand up and fight." He advocates a Tenth Amendment resolution that will assert state sovereignty and serve as the first step toward holding a second Constitutional Convention to dismantle the federal government. That convention, of course, will be held in Colorado Springs. Duke is a frequent guest on Baker's show.
David Boyd was a candidate for El Paso County sheriff in the last election. Patriots believe that sheriffs are the most powerful law enforcement officials in the country because they can command citizen militias. In his campaign statements, Boyd said he would refuse to enforce the Brady Bill. "There is nothing in my oath [as sheriff] that says I have to uphold state and federal laws," he noted. Boyd was trumpeted as a "pro-concealed-weapons and a Christian family man" who worships at New Life Church, where Duke is also a member.