The day after the House of Representatives acted to punish Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, the Republican congresswoman from northwest Georgia’s 14th District disabused any notion that she might change her style.
Greene posted on Twitter the morning of Feb. 5: “I woke up early this morning literally laughing thinking about what a bunch of morons the Democrats (+11) are for giving some one like me free time. In this Democrat tyrannical government, Conservative Republicans have no say on committees anyway. Oh this is going to be fun!”
The “+11” referred to the Republicans who joined Democrats in the 230-199 vote Feb. 4 that removed the first-term member from the Education and Labor Committee and the Budget Committee.
At a Friday news conference in front of the Capitol, Greene told reporters, “If I was on a committee, I’d be wasting my time, because my conservative values wouldn’t be heard, and neither would my district’s.” Not having committee assignments means that “I can talk to a whole lot more people all over this country, and I can talk to more people and make connections and build a huge amount of support.”
Greene’s defiance aside, Jewish groups were pleased that the House took action.
A statement issued by Allison Padilla-Goodman, vice president of the Atlanta-based Southern division of the Anti-Defamation League said that Greene “has promoted the QAnon movement and continues to be a purveyor of unhinged conspiracy theories based in antisemitism, Islamophobia, and racism. There is no place in our nation’s leadership for this hatred, and we have been advocating for limiting her involvement on congressional committees for several months. We applaud the House for their decision to remove her from her committee assignments.”
The Jewish Community Relations Council of Atlanta said in a statement: “As a Jewish organization, JCRC is distressed with the danger of her antisemitic, racist, Islamophobic and conspiratorial rhetoric. As a Georgia organization, we are concerned about the divisive impact her words have on civic discourse in our state.”
While acknowledging that Greene, in her Feb. 4 speech on the House floor, tried to walk back some of her controversial statements, JCRC said: “But she did not apologize for the hatred she has unleashed for years in building the public profile that carried her to Washington.
“JCRC of Atlanta believes in the fundamental Jewish principle of teshuva, the opportunity to atone for sins and return to the fold. Rep. Greene must demonstrate true regret and engage in civil discourse, calling people in to make this nation better and safer for all, not calling people out for their differences. The congresswoman must repent for her lies, false accusations and misstatements, sincerely apologize to those she has hurt, heckled and harassed, and take concrete action to repair the damage she has caused and the fear she has spread,” the statement concluded.
In a speech on the House floor Thursday night before the vote, Greene expressed regret for some of the conspiracy theories that she had touted, explaining that “I was allowed to believe things that weren’t true and I would ask questions about them and talk about them, and that is absolutely what I regret.”
Calling herself “a very regular American,” Greene told the House, “I never said any of these things since I have been elected for Congress.”
The Democratic majority moved to strip Greene of committee assignments after the Republican caucus chose not to punish Greene, with Minority Leader Rep. Kevin McCarthy of California calling the House vote a “partisan power grab.”
The 14th District takes in 11 counties and part of a 12th, stretching from the Tennessee border south to near Interstate 20. Rome is the largest city in the district, which was created in redistricting following the 2010 Census and has been reliably Republican.
Greene began in 2019 seeking the Republican nomination to the House from the 6th District, but when Republican incumbent Rep. Tom Graves opted not to see re-election, she switched to the 14th. Greene advanced from the June 9 Republican primary and defeated Dr. John Cowan in an Aug. 11 runoff. In the Nov. 3 general election, she received 74.7 percent of nearly 308,000 votes cast, defeating Democrat Kevin Van Ausdal, who quit the race several weeks before Election Day.
- Dave Schechter
- Marjorie Taylor Greene
- Education and Labor Committee
- Budget Committee
- Allison Padilla-Goodman
- Conspiracy Theories
- Jewish Community Relations Council of Atlanta
- Kevin McCarthy
- Tom Graves
- Dr. John Cowan
- Kevin Van Ausdal
- Election Day
- Anti-Defamation League