Protesters escorted out of GOP fundraiser with chants of ‘no more guns’

Protesters escorted out of GOP fundraiser with chants of ‘no more guns’
© Greg Nash

Two protesters were reportedly escorted out of a Republican fundraiser where Speaker Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanOvernight Health Care: Trump calls for crackdown on surprise medical bills | Trump officials give religious exemption to foster care program | Uninsured rate at highest level since 2014 | Juul hires former Harry Reid chief of staff As new Congress begins, federal-state connections are as important as ever Trump once asked Paul Ryan why he couldn’t be ‘loyal': book MORE (R-Wis.) was in attendance after confronting him about gun control following the Florida high school mass shooting.

The fundraiser was held Friday at the Ritz Carlton in Key Biscayne, just miles from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, where a gunman killed 17 people and wounded at least 14 on Wednesday.

Maria Thorne, a fifth grade teacher and activist, told the Miami Herald that she went to the event and found Ryan, where she shook his hand and introduced herself.

After exchanging pleasantries, she told him, “you’re here celebrating the death of 17 children,” according to the Herald. 

She said that Ryan told her he “didn’t want to talk politics,” and that she was escorted out by security after she tried to continue the conversation, chanting “No more guns.”

The event was listed as a “winter meeting” held by the House Republicans’ fundraising arm. 

Another activist group tweeted a video from outside the event, writing, “This is [Paul Ryan’s] version of Thoughts and Prayers. Odd, it looks like a donor event in the tropics.”

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Ryan called the shooting an act of “pure evil” and focused on the issue of mental health in discussing the shooting. He also warned against turning the conversation about the shooting into “taking away citizens’ rights” to own guns.

In the days since the shooting, surviving students and families from the school have been pleading with lawmakers to act on gun control.