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“They Could Not Beat People Power”: Voters Reelect TN Dems Expelled by GOP for Gun Violence Protest

HeadlineAug 04, 2023

In Tennessee, two Black Democratic lawmakers who were expelled by a Republican supermajority from the state House of Representatives have won reelection. Justin Pearson of Memphis and Justin Jones of Nashville were expelled in April for leading peaceful protests against gun violence inside the Tennessee General Assembly as thousands rallied to demand gun control in the wake of the Covenant elementary school shooting in Nashville. Both lawmakers were quickly reappointed to their former seats ahead of Thursday’s special elections, when they were permanently reelected. This is state Representative Justin Jones speaking after his victory.

Rep. Justin Jones: “Today’s election is a reminder that their attacks on democracy will not happen unchallenged. The people of District 52 have sent an overwhelming message, a mandate, to my Republican colleagues, that we’re going to stand up and fight back, and that we’re going to build a multiracial, multigenerational movement to transform this state and move our state forward, to fight for a state where we protect kids and not guns, to fight for a state where we protect each other, our humanity and our dignity. And so, we’ve treated this election seriously because we knew that they spent so much money trying to buy this election. But they could not beat people power.”

Supporters: “Yes!”

Click here to see all our interviews with Justin Jones.

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