RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) – Virginia Lt. Gov. Winsome Earle-Sears is set to be the keynote speaker for a fundraising event at the National Rifle Association’s annual conference in Houston, less than 300 miles from where 19 children and two teachers were killed in a mass shooting days before.

The Democratic Party of Virginia criticized Earle-Sears’ scheduled appearance at the NRA’s “Women’s Leadership Forum,” a luncheon and auction that will be held Friday, and called on her to not take part and denounce the powerful gun-rights group.

“Virginians should be in disbelief that our Lt. Governor would speak at an NRA event after an unconscionable Elementary School shooting that left 19 children dead,” said DPVA spokesperson Gianni Snidle.

According to the NRA’s website, tickets for the forum range from $250 to $2,500 and the event will help “raise funds essential to strengthening the NRA’s fight to protect our freedom.”

During her campaign, Earle-Sears famously had posters of her holding an assault rifle scattered around GOP convention locations in Virginia.

Earle-Sears’ office and her chief of staff did not respond to requests for an interview or comment Thursday, but the lieutenant governor tweeted about the shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas.

“An ill-wind is blowing through our land; a wretched evil that destroys. Terry and I are praying for the parents, siblings, family members, and friends of Robb Elementary School who are now experiencing the deepest of pains,” Earle-Sears wrote. “It is a season we wish on no one.”

The NRA’s annual conference also comes after a gunman killed 10 Black shoppers and employees at a grocery store in Buffalo. The recent mass shootings have pushed the issue of guns and gun violence to the center of national headlines, with calls for action from Congress and state lawmakers continuing to grow.

Former President Donald Trump and Texas Gov. Greg Abbott are set to speak at the NRA’s leadership forum after Earle-Sears is slated to speak.