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Clarifying the Second Amendment Sanctuary Vote

I want to clarify for folks what actually happened at tonight’s Town Council meeting. First, let me say that this is how democracy (even representative democracy) is supposed to work. It’s messy. It’s people making decisions about things that matter… in real time, in front of an audience of people who care about the issue.

We heard an hour-plus of people stating their opinions — including other council members, the police chief, the town administrator, the town solicitor’s office, residents, and non-residents.   Councilwoman Driggs apparently was persuaded during all this testimony that a sentence in the resolution was, indeed, problematic, so she voted against the resolution as I’d stated it.

After that motion failed 3-4, some council members stood up demanding a recess, and Council President Coulter asked whether we had, but was not able to secure, consensus that the agenda item was closed.  Thinking the matter over, people began to leave, and the president stated repeatedly during the break that the matter was still open.  After the recess, Councilor Driggs made it clear that she had voted against the motion as stated because she wanted to make a (relatively minor) change to the language.

After some discussion of process and concern that people had left, the council decided to move the rest of the agenda, including continued discussion of the Second Amendment Sanctuary Town resolution, to a special meeting on Monday, June 3, at 7:00 p.m.

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Justin Katz

Justin Katz, Vice President of the Tiverton Town Council, is a writer and researcher focusing on Rhode Island policy and politics. For more about Justin, see our About page. justin@justinkatz.com (401) 835-7156.

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