When freshman extremist Republican congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia was denied committee assignments by a vote of the entire House on February 4, she flippantly said the rebuke would give her “free time to boost conservative 2022 candidates and former President Donald Trump’s next venture.” That may be true when the 2022 primaries grow nigh and Greene can run around the country playing ideological commissar against Establishment RINOs. But for now, she’s found a way to stay in the spotlight without travel: taking the House floor in daily efforts to gum up the works.
Last week, she and some comrades from the House Freedom Caucus demanded floor votes on 13 routine “suspension calendar” items involving zero controversy, in a maneuver that would have taken ten hours to overcome; House leaders instead pulled the bills for the time being. Greene defended the tactic on grounds that the evil socialist Democrat regime was destroying the country:
“The American people deserve to know where their member of Congress stands with a roll call vote,” Greene said in a statement to CNN. “While thousands of illegal aliens are invading Biden’s open border, American kids are losing their education with closed schools, thousands of small businesses have been forced to shut down, the People really don’t care about politicians whining about voting and doing their job for 10 hours.”
Blah blah blah.
Greene has also been offering daily motions to adjourn the House on the similar theory that she is trying to defend our priceless heritage of freedom against the tyrannical election-stealing Democratic Party, as the Hill reported:
[I]n a floor speech this week, she railed against what she sees as Democrats’ wasteful $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief package; the anti-discrimination Equality Act, which she said “puts men in our little girls’ bathrooms, locker rooms and sports teams”; and the George Floyd police reform bill, which she disparaged as the “Democrats hate police” bill “that puts police on Biden’s hit list.”
“Mr. Speaker, I rise today to inform the Democrats that the radical path you are taking is going to cause you to lose in 2022,” Greene said before forcing a vote to adjourn.
MJT’s antics are beginning to annoy Republicans as well as Democrats. On Wednesday, 40 of her GOP colleagues voted against her motion to adjourn prior to consideration of the COVID-19 bill. One House Republican earlier declared herself “aggravated” when a Greene motion to adjourn forced her to leave a committee meeting. “Ms. Greene doesn’t have three hearings today like I do,” said Missouri’s Ann Wagner.
Unsurprisingly, Greene seems to have fully recovered from the marginal contrition she offered for her espousal of conspiracy theories like QAnon, prior to the vote to remove her from committees. If House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy has any plans to force her to respect the tradition of self-effacement among very junior House members, he’s keeping it very quiet.
Earlier, there was speculation that Georgia Republicans (many of whom opposed her congressional nomination last year after getting a load of Greene’s vast library of wild-ass social-media commentary) might gerrymander her out of her district. This was pretty naïve, as Cook Political Report redistricting wizard David Wasserman recently explained. For one thing, GOP legislators have bigger fish to fry, such as messing with the districts of one, if not both, of the Democrats who flipped traditionally Republican suburban U.S. House seats in 2018 (Lucy McBath) and 2020 (Carolyn Bourdeaux). For another, moving Greene’s latest home (in Rome, right in the center of the 14th District she represents) into a different district wouldn’t faze her; she parachuted into the 14th the minute incumbent Tom Graves announced his retirement, abandoning a race in the 6th District some distance away. She could parachute again, and run on the familiar whine that the Establishment RINOs were victimizing her. Worse yet, she could run for the Senate and cause all kinds of trouble for Republican plans to defeat the freshly elected Raphael Warnock in 2022, when he will be running for a full term.
So, they will leave her alone in a safe seat to spend as much time as she wants ranting and snarling in Congress. Maybe her colleagues in the GOP House Caucus or the underrepresented folks back home will get tired of her act. But for now, she is probably a very happy extremist with little to do but make a spectacle of herself.