Warren: Student gun protesters will 'spring us free' from NRA

Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenButtigieg tweeted support for 'Medicare for All' in 2018 Overnight Health Care — Presented by National Taxpayers Union — House Dems change drug pricing bill to address progressive concerns | Top Republican rejects Dem proposal on surprise medical bills | Vaping group launches Fox News ad blitz Hillicon Valley: FCC approves T-Mobile-Sprint merger | Dems wrangle over breaking up Big Tech at debate | Critics pounce as Facebook's Libra stumbles | Zuckerberg to be interviewed by Fox News | Twitter details rules for political figures' tweets MORE (D-Mass.) declared on Wednesday that students protesting gun violence across the country would free lawmakers from the influence of the National Rifle Association (NRA), which has long lobbied against new gun laws.

"The NRA has held Congress hostage for years now. These young people have shown up to spring us free; to say you're not here to do the work of the gun lobby, you're here to do the work of the American people," Warren told MSNBC at a protest in Washington. 

"I believe they will lead us," she added. "They are making a huge difference in our democracy. They are making sure democracy is about people being heard — not just the lobbyists."

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Warren's comments came as students across the country walked out of class to protest a rash of gun violence in the U.S., as well as lawmakers' failure to take action to strengthen firearms restrictions. Several Democratic lawmakers left the Capitol on Wednesday to join student protests outside.

Protesters began planning the demonstrations last month after a shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., left 17 people dead and 14 others injured. 

That shooting ignited a fierce debate over the nation's gun laws, with students emerging as some of the most vocal advocates for new gun control measures.

Students and gun control advocates have also specifically targeted the NRA with their protests, calling out the group's influence in Washington and elsewhere.