On ABC’s This Week, co-moderator Jon Karl invited Justin Pearson, one of the expelled former Democrat Tennessee representatives on the program to let him play the victim because he was held accountable for his actions. Opening the program on Easter Sunday, Karl still insisted on lying on this holy day.
Karl claimed the “two young black lawmakers [were] expelled from the state house of representatives after they took a stand on gun violence.” As NewsBusters Executive Editor Tim Graham noted on Twitter earlier on Sunday in response to Karl’s comments, it was like claiming “January 6 being ‘a stand for Trump's victory.’ You're moving the goalposts on shooting up a Christian school.”
Introducing the disgraced radical former representative, Karl asked the leading question: “You have spoken with great passion on the issue of gun violence. And I was wondering if you can tell us. I know you lost a classmate of yours to gun violence shortly before you were sworn in as a representative, what can you tell us about how that motivates you?”
This led Pearson to tell his sob story about experiencing so-called “gun violence” and how “over two thousand cars have gotten broken into” in his city. Which ironically is another reason why more Americans should be allowed to own firearms.
“The expulsion left your constituents, obviously, now without a representative in the state house,” Karl noted before gushing over the leftist former representative: “The Shelby county board of commissioners will have to send a replacement for you. Are they going to send you? Could we see you reinstated as early as next week?”
Pearson then announced his intention to “continue to serve District 86” and if there “is a special election I would definitely run in that special election.”
“Our voters have been disenfranchised. This is one of the greatest tactics of voter disenfranchisement and voter oppression that I have ever witnessed,” Pearson huffed.
“Your voice has certainly grown since this” Karl said, swooning over Pearson. “How are you going to use this platform to get done what you were trying to get done in the first place here?”
Pearson demanded that “We need to make sure that we’re banning assault weapons. We need red flag laws, we need gun store safety laws in our state.”
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To read the transcript click “expand”:
ABC’s This Week
9:01:59 a.m. Eastern
JON KARL: In Tennessee, two young black lawmakers expelled from the state house of representatives after they took a stand on gun violence.
9:23:21 a.m. Eastern
KARL: Representative Pearson, thank you for joining us. You have spoken with great passion on the issue of gun violence. And I was wondering if you can tell us. I know you lost a classmate of yours to gun violence shortly before you were sworn in as a representative, what can you tell us about how that motivates you?
JUSTIN PEARSON: Yes, Larry Thorne, the classmate I graduated with from Mitchell High School here in Memphis, Tennessee. Larry was an extraordinary person, a great administrator in schools, worked with kids all the time. The mourning and grief we still feel and experience today. Because we still haven't found out who killed Larry. But we do know that it was gun violence that killed Larry. We do know that in Nashville just over a week ago there was a shooting. Where six people were killed. Three children at 9 years old and 3 adults working at this school.
This has catalyzed the conversation about the need to end gun violence in our communities. And to realize that yes it is in schools and that’s something we need to deal with. But it is also in our communities. And that’s because there’s been a proliferation of guns and also a proliferation of laws in Republican led majority led legislatures like here in Tennessee that continue to have negative consequences for our communities. This state passed a permitless carry law, over two thousand cars have gotten broken into in our city and our county. The reason why? Because people are looking for guns. Murders are up 44 percent relative to this point last year in our city. There are real consequences to those decisions of people in power. And those consequences are disproportionately hurting our community and District 86 which I have the great fortune of representing.
KARL: The expulsion left your constituents, obviously, now without a representative in the state house. The Shelby County Board of Commissioners will have to send a replacement for you. Are they going to send you? Could we see you reinstated as early as next week?
PEARSON: Yeah, I do hope to continue to serve District 86 and the reappointment. There is a special election I would definitely run in that special election. Because our voters have been disenfranchised. This is one of the greatest tactics of voter disenfranchisement and voter oppression that I have ever witnessed. It is not only unprecedented, it is historical in nature. It’s an historical abuse of power by Cameron Sexton. And the super majority Republican legislature who would rather expel our voices and try to expel our peoples' voices from the peoples' house rather than address the issue of gun violence and the need for real gun safety reform legislation that could prevent people from dying in the first place. District 86, and our community, District 52 as well, representing Jones' community, wants to see us to serve them to speak up and to speak out when people like Cameron sexton and the Republican leadership would rather be silent or silence Democrats and Progressive voices.
KARL: Well, your voice has certainly grown since this. We saw both you and Justin Jones, Gloria Johnson having a call—video call with President Biden. Obviously, you had the Vice President come in to see you as well. How are you going to use this platform to get done what you were trying to get done in the first place here?
PEARSON: Yes, we can never forget that it is tragedy that has brought us to this moment. That it was six lives that were lost in addition to the shooter in Nashville at the Covenant School. Who has catalyzed this conversation and this need for change in our state. And it is young people. It’s children and teenagers by the thousands who continue to protest, who continue to march, who continue to raise their voices to say we need to do something to end gun violence. We need to make sure that we’re banning assault weapons. We need red flag laws, we need gun store safety laws in our state. That are going to help to propel this movement. And I pray to God to be able to use my voice as a member of the state legislature, to represent Memphis, and Shelby County and Milington to continue to fight to pass reasonable, sensible legislation that the majority of people in Tennessee want.
The reality is we have a supermajority Republican legislature that doesn’t want to see progress. That prefers to listen to the NRA rather than to constituents. And in fact the Speaker had the audacity to call some of those children, and some of those parents, and grandparents insurrectionists. Likening them to January 6 because they’re demanding their voices be heard in a democracy, which is what we have a responsibility to ensure every person feels that they have a voice in democracy and will not be silenced.
KARL: All right, representative Justin J. Pearson, thank you for joining us on This Week. We’ll talk to you again soon, thank you.