The ouster vote came less than two weeks after three 9-year-olds and three adults were shot to death at a Nashville elementary school.
Jones said he and Pearson see their role not as convincing opposing lawmakers of their views, but as a «voice of moral dissent» and a «speed bump to try to keep them from driving this train off the cliff.» «.
More than a dozen members of the Nashville Metropolitan Council said they plan to vote to reappoint Jones and send him back to the Tennessee House of Representatives. The Tennessee reported.
That «hostile environment,» Jones added, has been fueled by Republicans, including House Speaker Cameron Sexton, who do not see young black men like Jones and Pearson as equal or deserving of being in the Legislature: » We know what we do.» you’re facing.»
In a separate interview on Fox News on Friday morning, Sexton defended the ouster vote and rejected allegations that racism was the reason Jones and Pearson were ousted while Johnson was not, an allegation that she herself Johnson asked reporters after Thursday’s vote. The speaker said Johnson’s lawyers argued that she acted differently from the couple during the protest, she did not yell or use a megaphone, and other members thought she did not play as central a role in the demonstration as Jones and Pearson.
“She is trying to cover up the racism in this, that there was nothing in this. They were all given due process,» Sexton told Fox News. «What they did was not right, and deserved expulsion.»
Sexton also defended the Legislature’s actions against President Joe Biden’s condemnation that the ousters were «shocking» and «undemocratic,» saying he doesn’t think the president will tolerate such protests on the floor of Congress.
Johnson said she doesn’t believe there was due process for her and the other two: «There were no rules,» she told MSNBC on Friday morning, adding that lawmakers questioned her in a different way than the two men. “It is scary that this is what is happening to our democratic process.”