Demonstrators caused chaos at the Tennessee State Capitol again on Thursday in protest of a vote to remove three lawmakers who broke House rules last week when they disrupted proceedings for nearly an hour with anti-gun protesters.
The three lawmakers facing expulsion – Reps. Gloria Johnson, Justin Jones and Justin Pearson – are accused of engaging in “disorderly behavior” and intentionally bringing “disorder and dishonor to the House of Representatives.”
Video posted on Twitter showed the three lawmakers who disrupted House proceedings entering the Tennessee Capitol on Thursday with their fists in the air.
Another video showed a large crowd gathered outside the Tennessee Capitol in protest of the expulsion.
Tennessee House Speaker Cameron Sexton told Fox News, “I want to make sure everybody knows this has nothing to do about the protest outside the House chamber or the protests outside the Capitol. This is about these three members’ actions on the House floor, how they shut us down, and how they led protests from the House chamber to those [people] in the balcony.”
Sexton said the lawmakers facing expulsion are trying to make it about the protesters demonstrating outside the Tennessee Capitol.
“Their voices were not silenced. This has nothing to do with anything that happened outside the House chamber,” Sexton said.
“These three individuals stormed up to the well where you speak from without being recognized, did not display decorum, they disrupted the proceedings where we had to shut down, pulled out a megaphone and started to lead the balcony in protest for the next 30 to 45 minutes,” Sexton continued.
“Their actions on the House floor rise to the level of expulsion. We cannot allow these types of things to take place in the people’s House,” he added.
Inside the Tennesee Capitol, video shows anti-gun demonstrators chanting, “Hey hey, ho ho, the NRA has got to go.”
Hundreds of left-wing demonstrators demanding gun control stormed the Tennessee state Capitol building last week, pushing law enforcement and disrupting legislative proceedings while shouting, “No action! No peace!” The demonstration comes after a transgender shooter targeted a Christian school this week, killing three children and three adults.
A Tennessee non-profit group called AWAKE organized the demonstration.
“AWAKE was founded 10 years ago in part to advocate for the health and safety of kids in Tennessee. The tragic shooting at Covenant School in Nashville yesterday was the 129th mass shooting in the US this year. This is and has always been unacceptable,” the group wrote on Facebook earlier this week. “We have collaborated with community organizations and individual citizens to organize a rally at the State Capitol Thursday morning. If you are looking for a way to channel your grief, anger, and confusion into action- please join us.”
This was a breaking news story. The details were periodically updated as more information became available.