Judge dismisses group’s effort to remove Black Virginia state senator

CHESAPEAKE, Va. (AP) — A judge in Virginia has swiftly rebuked a conservative group’s effort to remove a Black state senator from office. Louise Lucas is a Democrat who represents parts of southeastern Virginia. She is also the state Senate’s president pro tempore.

The petition of 4,600 signatures was filed by members of the Virginia Tea Party. It targeted Lucas’ role in a protest last year that ended with heavy damage to a Confederate monument in Portsmouth.

A Chesapeake Circuit Court judge ruled Friday that only the state Senate can expel one of its members.

Those who filed the petition claimed that Lucas tried to orchestrate a riot at the monument. Others saw the petition as a political stunt against a powerful Black woman.

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