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Connolly Statement on Law Enforcement Attack on Peaceful Protesters in Lafayette Park

Congressman Gerry Connolly (D-VA), Chairman of the Subcommittee on Government Operations, released the following statement regarding the unwarranted attack by law enforcement on peaceful protesters in Lafayette Park:

"Last night, we watched in horror as law enforcement carried out an attack on peaceful demonstrators exercising their First Amendment rights outside the White House. My horror quickly turned to outrage as it became clear such force was applied solely to clear the way for the president to pose for photos across the street. 

"We are a country crying out for justice for George Floyd and an end to the centuries-long scourge of racist police brutality that has stolen so many black lives from our communities. Last night the president made clear that his response to our collective plea will not be one of compassion and an open heart, but one of hate, violence, and propaganda. 

"Federal law enforcement agencies in our America are not tools of fascism, and they are not the personal guardians of our president's fragile vanity. This is the behavior of tyrants, and it cannot stand. 

"I will not be silent in the face of outright abuse of power. The president's words and actions last night, including his threat to use the force of our military against his own people, serve only to fan the flames of racism and hatred in our country.

"We are a nation on fire, and Donald Trump holds the match. We need reconciliation and healing. And we need new, compassionate leadership."
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