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LWV of Tennessee Statement on Expelled State Representatives

Press Release / Last Updated:

NASHVILLE  The League of Women of Voters of Tennessee issued the following statement after the Tennessee State Legislature voted to expel two general assembly members:

“Today is a sad day for democracy in the state of Tennessee. Two Black representatives, who were duly elected to represent the people of Nashville and Memphis, were expelled from their seats for peacefully protesting gun violence.  

"The people of Tennessee deserve a state legislature that represents all communities, instead of robbing majority Black communities of their right to representation in our government. Instead of prioritizing gun safety that Tennesseans called for, the Legislature chose to vilify the three members, Representatives Johnson, Jones, and Pearson, who courageously stood up with their constituents.   

"What happened today in our general assembly was shameful. The racist tone of floor arguments, along with the outcome that exempted the one white representative from expulsion, make clear the real intent behind our assembly’s actions today.  

"The voices of the people will not be silenced, and our general assembly must listen to the cries of Tennesseans for fair representation and protection against gun violence.”


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