FRANKFORT, Ky. (WKYT) - Armed protesters gathered Saturday afternoon the grounds of the Kentucky State Capitol. Just days after the Jan. 6 attack on the United States Capitol building, and as Kentucky lawmakers met inside for the legislative session.
Protesters there say they wanted to send a message to lawmakers.
“We want them to listen to us because that’s what we pay them for, " said Tony Wheatley with Constitutional Kentucky. “Some of those laws are not very well written and we want to make sure that we can have some control of what’s in them so that we’re not giving away our lives.”
Wheatley is one of the organizers of Saturday’s protest. He said the demonstration was made up of four or five groups and militias from across Kentucky.
Wheatley clarified this protest is not like the events that unfolded in the nation’s capitol just a few days ago.
“They’re all friendly. No one’s going to be hurt, there’s not going to be rushing into buildings, and we just want people to understand that, that this is not about force.”
These protesters are focused on the bills being discussed right now, and they’re also asking lawmakers to impeach Governor Andy Beshear.
“He’s done things that just don’t add up to normal business. Not just because of the mandates that have taken place, but there are other things that the governor is done like borrowing 865 million dollars without consent of the legislators,” said Wheatley.
Wheatley believes some legislators agree with the crowd, but he said ultimately, impeachment isn’t likely.
“But we want just to get the point across to the American people and the people of Kentucky that there are things you can do besides storm the capital.”
While their voices were outside the capitol, they say they hope their message was heard inside.
Kentucky State Police increased their presence at the capitol this week.
Governor Andy Beshear released a statement about the demonstration: