Texas Dem denies threatening colleague on legislature floor

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A Democratic Texas state representative flatly denied on Tuesday that he had threatened one of his Republican colleagues during a massive protest at the state capitol a day earlier.

Texas state Rep. Matt Rinaldi (R) accused state Rep. Alfonso “Poncho” Nevárez (D) in a Monday Facebook post of threatening his life, after Rinaldi called Immigration and Customs Enforcement on protesters in the state capitol whom he believed to be undocumented immigrants.

But Nevárez said on CNN’s “New Day” on Tuesday that he did not threaten Rinaldi, and, in fact, accused the Republican of saying he was going to “put a bullet in my brain.”


“A little scuffle broke out, and I got in there and when I realized what it was about and what he was doing and saying, you know, I got in his face and I put my hands on the guy,” Nevárez recounted. “And I asked him, ‘These are things that shouldn’t happen on the House floor; it’s a break in decorum, we shouldn’t be doing that.'”

“And so in that and another exchange, I said, you know, we need to take this outside, because it’s not going to get — it shouldn’t get resolved here in front of all these people,” he continued.

Nevárez also acknowledged that the protesters in the capitol on Monday became “unruly,” but defended their actions, arguing that they might not be familiar with the rules of the legislature.

“They showed up at the state house and granted they were a little unruly and they may not know the rules of the chamber, but they were there acting on democracy,” he said. “And if anything died yesterday, it wasn’t democracy, it was decorum.”

Tags Alfonso Poncho Nevarez Matt Rinaldi Texas

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