Deschutes County Republicans host controversial speaker

(Information from: The Bulletin,

BEND, Ore. (AP) — Republicans in central Oregon proceeded with a presentation by a former FBI agent known for his anti-Muslim rhetoric, despite calls from Democrats and a Muslim civil liberties organization to cancel the event.

The Bulletin reports the Deschutes County Republican Party on Tuesday hosted an hour-long speech by John Guandolo, who the Southern Poverty Law Center has described as an anti-Muslim extremist.

State and county Democrats and the state chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations called on Republicans to drop the speech and asked the Republican candidates for governor to condemn the event.

County Republican Party chairwoman Patti Adair says she stood by the invitation, but she didn’t know about Guandolo’s reputation.

Guandolo, who left the FBI in 2008, hosts seminars on what he describes as “jihadi threats.”