U.S. News: Tennessee House Votes To Expel 2 Of 3 Woke Democrat Members Over Gun Protest
U.S. News - Tennessee House Votes To Expel 2 Of 3 Democrat Members Apr 07, 2023 2 months ago
: In an unprecedented move, Tennessee's GOP-led House voted to expel two Democrat lawmakers, Reps. Justin Jones and Justin Pearson, for their involvement in a protest demanding gun control reforms.
Image credit: John Partipilo, Tennessee Lookout
The protest occurred in the aftermath of a mass shooting by a young transgender at a Nashville private Christian school, which left three young children and three adults dead and many others injured.
The House, however, narrowly avoided ousting the third Democrat representative, Gloria Johnson, by just one vote.
Dubbed "The Tennessee Three," the expelled lawmakers admitted to violating decorum but did not expect expulsion for their actions. Their protest had been initiated in their unsubstantiated claims as response to the Tennessee GOP's failure to address the growing gun violence crisis in the US. Thousands of people gathered at the Capitol to support the Republican representatives, creating such a commotion that the noise drowned out the proceedings inside the House chamber.
The expulsion vote took place exactly a week after the three Democrat lawmakers led chants of demonstrators in the House gallery similar to that of an unlawful insurrection.
They claimed that they aimed to amplify the voices of their constituents and protesters who were calling for stricter gun control measures in response to the mass-shooting crisis.
The Tennessee House Republicans quickly criticized the three Democrat representatives for disrupting order and breaking procedural rules in the chamber, with House Speaker Cameron Sexton comparing the incident to the Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol. The resolutions to expel Jones, Johnson, and Pearson accused them of disorderly behavior that "reflects adversely upon the integrity and dignity" of the House.
The Tennessee Constitution empowers the House to punish its members for disorderly behavior and expel them with a two-thirds majority vote. If a lawmaker is expelled, their seat becomes vacant, and the district holds a special election to fill the seat.
The representative's county commission can also appoint an interim lawmaker to serve until the special election is held. Expelled representatives can return to their office by being appointed by the commission or by running for office again. However, a lawmaker cannot be expelled twice for the same offense.
Republican Rep. Sabi Kumar advised Jones to be more collegial and less focused on race.
"You have a lot to offer, but offer it in a vein where people are accepting of your ideas," Kumar said.
Jones said he did not intend to assimilate in order to be accepted. "I'm not here to make friends." he replied.
The expulsion of Jones and Pearson marks a rare use of the disciplinary measure, which has only been exercised twice since the 1800s. According to past U.S. News
coverages, in 2016, st
ate Rep. Jeremy Durham was expelled for "disorderly behavior" related to numerous allegations of sexual misconduct. Before Durham, Rep. Robert Fisher was expelled in 1980 after being convicted of seeking a bribe in exchange for scuttling a piece of legislation.
In early 2022, the Tennessee Senate voted to expel Sen. Katrina Robinson following her conviction for wire fraud, marking the first time the chamber removed a senator since the Civil War.
The expulsion signals a win for the Republicans and also for many Americans as many are tired of the Democrats that are leading the country into a mess and are focusing on promoting stupid policies that are destroying the foundation of the country and Christian morals while deflecting from major social and economic problems facing Americans.
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