During a trip to Nashville, Tennessee April 7, Vice President Kamala Harris called out GOP lawmakers who ousted two Black Democratic members for protesting against gun violence on the chamber floor.
“Can you imagine? Let’s get rid of them entirely. Let’s remove them not only from that moment but remove these people who have been elected to represent the people,” Harris said during a speech at Fisk University, a historically Black college.
Harris said the three Democrats were “silenced and stifled” for fighting to protect schoolchildren to the rousing Fisk University audience.
“A democracy says you do not stifle the people. You don’t turn off their microphones when they are speaking about the importance of life and liberty,” Harris said to a roaring crowd of supporters.
Rep. Gloria Johnson and former Reps. Justin Jones and Justin Pearson faced expulsion from their Republican colleagues for participating in an unauthorized protest on Thursday, according to NBC News.
Although the protest was peaceful, Johnson, the only White lawmaker out of the three, survived her vote. This decision leaves about 140,000 voters in primarily Black districts in Nashville and Memphis with no representation in the House.
The vice president made it clear she wanted stricter firearm laws and more gun control and to support these leaders who protested following a school shooting in Nashville, Tennessee. She and President Biden later met with all three Democratic lawmakers and offered support.
“Let’s understand the underlying issue is about fighting for the safety of our children,” Harris added. “It’s been years now where they are taught to read and write and hide in a closet and be quiet if there’s a mass shooter at their school, where our children, who have God’s capacity to learn and lead, who go to school in fear.”
Pearson and Jones declared they wanted to return to their seats during an appearance on Sunday on NBC’s Meet the Press.
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