John Oliver challenges 'definitely lying' Tennessee Republican who claimed he doesn't see race
Photo: screen capture

Comedian John Oliver addressed the shocking actions in Tennessee last week, in which three lawmakers experienced expulsion votes because they spoke up to the gallery full of gun safety protesters that were demanding action after the mass shooting in the state.

He opened with a video of state Rep. William Lamberth, a Republican, who told a group of students to their faces that he didn't care about their desperate need not to be shot in school and instead asked them what gun they would be open to being shot with. Gun safety advocates have argued that the AR-15, the gun of choice of many mass shooters, generally doesn't leave many survivors because its bullets explode once they hit.

Children, in particular, rarely survive an AR-15 shot because they're so much smaller, and their vital organs are closer together, experts have said.

"That is a hall-of-fame sh–––y response," said Oliver. "But also, if you're opening is, 'you're not going to like my answer,' maybe start thinking of the better ones."

He went on to answer the question: "I don't want to be shot by any guns."

Tennessee Speaker Cameron Sexton, a Republican, claimed on the video that the reason that the Democrats should be expelled was that "they were inciting violence." When asked how, he had a rough time answering.

"Well, they were tryin' to jazz people up," Sexton said. "When we have—"

"Incite violence," the reporter asked again.

"When we have representatives trying to go to the restroom, they got spit on," Sexton complained.

"Do you have any evidence that these three members were encouraging protesters to spit on members or troopers?" the reporter asked.

"I mean, you can't prove that," said Sexton.

"Oh, ok," said Oliver with a shrug. "So, you can't prove they were inciting violence. But in the interest of safety, you felt a responsibility to take their dangerous platform away from them."

"But if the set of megaphones they had were, say, something that could fire a hundred rounds in a matter of minutes, then sadly, it's literally impossible to do anything to prevent that, because we asked the prematurely embalmed Mayor of Whoville and he said 'no,'" Oliver said showing a photo of NRA chief Wayne LaPierre.

Citing The Tennessean's interview with Rep. Gloria Johnson, one of the Tennessee Three, Oliver noted that the legislature had a child molester on the Assembly floor for years that Republicans worked to get reelected. Some members were peeing in chairs, exposing themselves in a public place. Finally, another member was illegally prescribing drugs to what Johnson said was his "cousin-mistress," also without action by the GOP-led Assembly.

When Johnson suggested that the reason she was saved from expulsion was due to her skin color, Lamberth proclaimed, "Our members literally didn't look at the ethnicity of the members that were up for expulsion."

That's when Oliver decided to poke the bear.

"OK, legally, I can't say that guy is lying," Oliver explained. "Which is why it's going to be an interesting day for our lawyers tomorrow when they find out I said, 'That guy is definitely lying!' We literally don't see color is the universal tell for people who spent all day thinking about how they'd like to see less color."

The Tennessee GOP has bragged that they're "just getting started," when asking their supporters for cash.

See the full segment from Oliver below or at the link here.