Republican lawmakers in the Tennessee House began an expedited process to expel three Democratic representatives who participated in a protest against gun violence on the floor last week following the mass shooting at Nashville’s Covenant School. The Democrats led protest chants without being recognized to speak, The Tennessean reported, an action House leadership characterized as an “insurrection.”
The introduction of the expulsion resolutions on Monday, the same day thousands of Nashville students walked out of school and rallied for gun reform at the Capitol, was followed by chaos: Observing protesters yelled and chanted “Fascists! Fascists!” before state troopers physically removed some from the crowd; lawmakers confronted one another on the floor; and one of the targeted Democrats later accused another member of stealing his phone and “trying to incite a riot.”
Though expulsion is extraordinarily rare in the state House — and a partisan expulsion vote would be “unprecedented” — the Democrats have little hope of staying in office: The body is controlled by a Republican supermajority, and the initial resolutions passed in a party-line vote. The final vote is scheduled for Thursday.
What to Know Today
During a student protest against gun violence at the Tennessee Capitol on Monday, Republican state Representative William Lamberth rhetorically asked demonstrators to let him know “if there is a firearm out there that you’re comfortable being shot with.” [HuffPost]
The Virginia teacher who was shot by her 6-year-old student in January is suing the Newport News School Board and school officials for $40 million in damages, alleging administrators failed to respond to multiple warnings before the shooting. [Courthouse News]
A 27-year-old white man reportedly armed with more than 1,000 rounds of ammo, several guns, and an assortment of other deadly weapons was arrested on the campus of North Carolina A&T State University, a historically Black college that was targeted by racist bomb threats last year. Students and parents are criticizing the university for initially denying reports that an armed man was on campus. [NewsOne]
The National Tracing Center performs one of the ATF’s most important jobs: understanding a gun’s path from production to its use in a crime. Why are efforts to modernize the center stalled in Congress? [Politico]
California’s program to seize guns from people prohibited by courts from possessing them is mired in a huge backlog: Since 2021, at least 23,000 people flagged by the program have remained armed. [CalMatters]
Florida’s permitless carry law eliminates the requirement for gun owners to obtain a training certificate. Many firearm instructors say safely carrying a gun requires even more training than the previous mandate demanded. [Tampa Bay Times] Context: With Florida’s law, permitless carry measures are now on the books in the majority of states. Most Americans, though, still live in states that require a permit or license to carry concealed firearms.
A federal judge reluctantly struck down a Minnesota law preventing adults under 21 from applying for carry permits, concluding that the restriction is inconsistent with Bruen. The law will remain in place while the state appeals the decision. [Associated Press]
Victims of domestic violence or human trafficking in California who are charged with violent crimes may soon be able to use evidence of their abuse in their defense at criminal trials. [Los Angeles Times]
“I Asked the ATF for Crime Gun Data. A Court Says the Agency Has to Finally Hand It Over”: In early 2017, The Trace’s Alain Stephens filed a public records request with the ATF to answer a simple question: How many guns once owned by police departments had been found at crime scenes? A spokesperson said that former police guns were indeed ending up in crimes — but refused to provide any additional details.