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Tipsheet

Kamala Harris Defends Chaotic Anti-Gun Protest in TN Captiol

AP Photo/Alex Brandon

Vice President Kamala Harris defended the actions of three Tennessee state lawmakers and the protesters who interrupted House proceedings, which also saw lawmakers having to be escorted by Tennessee Highway Patrol troopers when they left the chamber.

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Two of the three representatives, Justin Jones and Justin Pearson, were expelled by their colleagues for being disorderly during House business while Gloria Johnson was saved from expulsion by one vote.

"They chose to lead and show courage to say that a democracy allows for places for the people's voice will be heard and honored and respected. And they understood the importance, these three...to say the people will not be silenced. To say that a democracy hears the cries, hears the pleas, who hears the demands of its people who say the children should be able to live and be safe and go to school and not be in fear!" Harris proclaimed.

The incident that resulted in the heated debate over the representatives' expulsions resulted in shoving matches between troopers and protesters after the crowd attempted to prevent other elected officials from being able to leave or return to the House chamber. 

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The protest at the state Capitol was in response to the school shooting at a private Christian school in Nashville, which resulted in the deaths of three young children and three adults. The shooter identified as transgender and left behind a manifesto, along with other pieces of evidence, that indicate she specifically targeted the school. Another location to attack was scouted before the shooter did not choose it because it had too much security.

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