Neo-Nazi rally in Nashville condemned by lawmakers

A neo-Nazi rally in downtown Nashville over the weekend is being condemned by a local Jewish group and by state lawmakers.

Witness videos posted on social media over the weekend showed a small group of people, wearing red shirts and black masks, giving Nazi salutes and carrying a black swastika flag as they marched through downtown streets in broad daylight. Clips showed the marchers passing through Broadway, the city's bustling music row, and by the state capitol, chanting "Sieg Heil" and calling for deportations.

A man posted a two-minute video of himself following and confronting the group, calling them "cowards" for not showing their faces.

The videos showed the marchers' clothing bearing the phrase "Blood Tribe," which the Anti-Defamation League identifies as "a growing neo-Nazi group" officially founded in 2021 that does not allow female members and "presents itself as a hardcore white supremacist group and rejects white supremacists who call for softer 'optics.'" The ADL reported that Blood Tribe held marches in Florida, Ohio and Wisconsin in 2023.

State Rep. Justin Jones, a Democrat representing part of Nashville, shared a video of himself standing near the marchers as they passed by, and said he saw them after leaving an event honoring a Black sorority. Jones held a rally on Monday at the state capitol with religious leaders and activists, denouncing the display that he said was "meant to intimidate our community."

State Rep. Justin Pearson, a Democrat representing parts of Memphis, posted a video driving by the group as they held up Nazi flags.

Jones and Pearson were both expelled from Tennessee's Republican-led House last year after leading protests on the House floor, as hundreds of demonstrators at the capitol called for tighter gun control laws after the mass shooting at a private religious school in Nashville. Both lawmakers were reinstated just days later. In their posts about the Nazi rally, Jones and Pearson both accused their Republican colleagues of fostering an environment that led to the march.

Lawmakers from both parties have issued statements condemning the rally, including Gov. Bill Lee, a Republican, who said, "Nazism and antisemitism should never be tolerated in any form." House Majority Leader Rep. William Lamberth, also a Republican, filed a resolution on Tuesday "commending Tennesseans for their opposition to and condemnation of neo-Nazism."

The Jewish Federation of Greater Nashville called the demonstrators "cowardly" and said it has been in contact with law enforcement, according to CBS Nashville affiliate WTVF.

No arrests were reported from the march. Nashville police said in a statement that "some persons on Broadway challenged the group," and that the marchers then "headed to a U-Haul box truck, got in, and departed Davidson County."

Nikki Haley vows to continue campaign through Super Tuesday

What Capital One buying Discover could mean for consumers

Haley defies calls from Trump to drop out of 2024 race