Pro-Palestinian protesters interrupt Adam Schiff’s victory speech

  • More than 30,000 Palestinians killed in Gaza since Israel-Hamas war started
  • Calls for a cease-fire have gotten more support  in Congress
  • Schiff says he agrees with pause in fighting if hostages released

(NewsNation) — Pro-Palestinian protesters interrupted Democratic Rep. Adam Schiff as he celebrated his victory in the California Senate primary Tuesday night.

Schiff is now projected to advance to the general election in November, along with Republican former baseball star Steve Garvey, though not all votes have been counted yet. Schiff and Garvey are set to compete for the seat long held by Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein, who died last fall.

NewsNation local affiliate KTLA reports that protesters chanted for a “cease-fire now,” and at least one person was escorted away from the stage.

“We are so lucky to live in a democracy where we all have the right to protest,” Schiff said in response, according to KTLA. “We want to make sure we keep this kind of democracy.”

Politico called Schiff the most ardently pro-Israel Democrat in the California Senate race, though added that he has backed the White House’s call for a temporary cease-fire in Gaza linked to a larger deal.

“My position is the same as the administration,” Schiff told reporters, “which is there needs to be a deal to release the hostages and have a pause in the fighting.”

While Biden has said he hopes for a cease-fire deal to materialize, he has not gone as far as calling for the permanent end to Israel’s ground offensive in Gaza. More than 30,000 have been killed in Gaza due to Israel’s bombardment of the area, while violence continues to surge against Palestinians in the West Bank.

Israel declared war on Oct. 7, after Hamas-led militants stormed the country and killed 1,200 people and took around 250 others hostage.

Since Oct. 7, the humanitarian situation in Gaza has gotten worse, with aid agencies and experts saying at least one-quarter of the population is starving. In Rafah, there are dense tent camps to house the roughly 1.4 million people who sought refuge there — but Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office recently said the army had presented an operational plan for a ground offensive into the area.

This has sparked global concern, and NewsNation partner The Hill reports more in Congress have urged increased humanitarian aid, as well as shown more support for some form of a cease-fire in Gaza. Schiff’s Democratic opponent in the California Senate primary, Rep. Barbara Lee, has long demanded a cease-fire, Politico writes, while his other challenger, Rep. Katie Porter in December, said a “bilateral cease-fire” is needed.

Israel, meanwhile, boycotted cease-fire talks in Cairo on Sunday after Hamas rejected its demand for a complete list naming hostages that are still alive.

The Associated Press contributed to this story.


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