Karl Hess, Barry Goldwater’s anarchist speechwriter, included the words: “Extremism in defense of liberty is no vice. Moderation in pursuit of justice is no virtue,” in Goldwater’s acceptance speech for the 1964 Republican nomination for the presidency. While Marjorie Taylor Greene was born 10 years later on May 27, 1974, in Milledgeville, Georgia, she has embraced Goldwater’s words while missing his message. As an avid QAnon supporter, Rep. Greene seeks to influence the far-right advocating for gun rights while expounding on anti-Semitism and anti-Muslim rhetoric. She endorsed violence against congressional leaders, calling for the assassination of Nancy Pelosi and Barack Obama for treason, claimed that the Parkland and Sandy Hook school shootings were faked to promote stricter gun control laws and that the 9/11 attack on the Pentagon never happened. She claimed that Jewish lasers caused the California wildfires to support Jewish business interests.
After four years of refusing to hold Donald Trump accountable for his lies, conspiracy theories and hateful rhetoric, Republicans failed yet again to purge those forces from their ranks when they overwhelmingly opposed Democrats’ efforts to rebuke Greene.
According to former Republican operative Stuart Stevens, “Republicans have sent a message that lying is useful and productive, racism is acceptable, the press is the enemy, and a strong-man authoritarian head of government is ideal.” (“It Was All A Lie — How the Republican Party Became Donald Trump,” Stuart Stevens, 2020). Republican leaders such as Kevin McCarthy and Jim Jordan abdicated their responsibility to the Constitution and the United States as well as to humanity for personal and political gain.
McCarthy should have not only removed Greene of her committee assignments, but also he should have argued for her removal from the House of Representatives. The seditious act of violence perpetrated on the Capitol on Jan. 6 by Trump supporters followed by the venomous rantings of Greene have no place in our country.
At a press conference outside the Capitol, Greene said the vote to remove her from the House Budget Committee and House Education and Labor Committee wasn’t fair to her constituents. Responding to reporters, Greene stated, “free speech really matters, and yesterday, when the Democrats and 11 of my Republican colleagues decided to strip me of my committee assignments — Education and Labor and the Budget Committee — you know what they did. They actually stripped my district of their voice.”
Committee work would be fruitless under the “tyrannically controlled government,” in which President Joe Biden is advancing some aspects of his policy agenda through executive orders and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is “leading the Democrats to do whatever they want,” Greene said, adding, “they don’t care what Republicans have to say.”
McCarthy warned Democrats that they were embarking onto a slippery slope. McCarthy ignores the fact that Greene fanned the flames of the Capitol insurrection by encouraging the big lie that Trump, and not Biden, won the election and objected to the election certification process. Greene later denounced the violence at the Capitol but falsely blamed it on “BLM/Antifa violence.” Greene never apologized for her hateful words and actions.
Sadly, Greene’s ideology is further supported by Rep. Mike Garcia. Instead of rebuking Greene by voting with the 11 Republicans who joined the Democrats to remove Greene from her congressional committees, Garcia voted with McCarthy and Jordan in support of Greene. Unfortunately, I’m not surprised. While L.A. County hospitals overflowed with COVID-19 patients and health care workers and EMTs were told to ration health care, Garcia focused on overturning the results of the 2020 Presidential Election. Instead of securing vaccines for everyone within the 25th Congressional District who wants a vaccination, Garcia blamed Gov. Gavin Newsom and other Democrats for the lack of vaccinations. Garcia also voted against impeaching Trump, believing Trump should NOT be held accountable for his actions while in office.