Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia, a controversial Republican, testified under oath on Friday to explain statements she made before the Jan. 6 rebellion in the U.S. Capitol. Her reelection is being challenged by voters and a legal organisation backing her opponent for her involvement prior to the disturbance.
Despite months of investigation by a Democratic-led committee in Washington, D.C., Greene testified Friday in an Atlanta courtroom as the first Republican member of Congress to speak publicly about the Jan. 6 assault.
Free Speech For People, a charity representing voters in Greene’s district, argued in front of an administrative law court that Greene should be disqualified for encouraging and supporting the rioters who stormed the Capitol.
Reiterating unfounded assertions about election fraud, the congresswoman insisted on the witness stand that her inflammatory language before to the Jan. 6 election was not an appeal for violence, but a plea to challenge the vote count.
In answer to a query, Greene said, “I don’t endorse violence of any type.” As far as I’m concerned, “My statements are not meant to incite violence.”
When Greene walked into the courtroom, her fans applauded.
The 14th Amendment is cited.
An insurrectionary member of Congress is barred from holding office, according to a clause in the United States Constitution cited by Free Speech For People’s attorneys. The 14th Amendment contains a provision aimed at preventing former Confederates from regaining their congressional seats after the Civil War.
Modern legal theory has been mostly untested.
For years, Greene has used aggressive language against her political opponents and has consistently circulated false claims regarding the 2020 election, particularly in the lead-up to January 6, 2021.
Ron Fein, legal director for Free Speech for People, told the court, “This was not a situation where the leaders were on horseback leading the charge.” “Instead, the insurgents were hiding in plain sight on social media sites like Facebook and Twitter, in places that would make even the most jaded among us gag. One of them, it seems, was Marjorie Taylor Greene.”
It is Greene’s contention that the opposition to her candidacy is a fabrication and an attempt to rob her people of their freedom to vote for whoever they want.
When asked about her words, social media postings and discussions prior to Jan. 6, Greene often replied, “I don’t know” or “I don’t remember.”
Her office did not provide tours to the public or give campaign or congressional staffers any information on or funding for those who participated in the pre-riot riots, she claimed when asked about this.
“The 1776 moment”
“1776 moment” is euphemism for political violence in certain far-right groups, according to lawyers from Free Speech For People.
“1776” has never been said violently, according to Greene.
A Facebook video from January 2021, in which Greene remarked, was also aired by the plaintiffs’ attorneys “You can’t enable Joe Biden’s peaceful transition of power to let him to become president of the United States. Why did this election not go his way? It’s being taken from a safe deposit box.”
While she and other members of Congress were in the process of preparing objections to the election results, Greene urged people to come and join her and other members of Congress at the Capitol in Washington.
Greene argues that the video was edited to remove context from the story.
“I don’t remember” whether she ever urged then-President Trump to use martial rule in order to stay in office.
Attorneys for her claim she was a victim of the Jan. 6 assault, not a participant in it, and that her political discourse is protected.
“The right to vote is at issue, right now, right now,” said James Bopp, an Indiana-based attorney representing Greene, “because they want to deny the ability to vote to thousands of individuals in the 14th district of Georgia by removing Greene off the ballot.” “Those people are entitled to cast their ballots for anybody they like.”
Others have had similar difficulties.
A North Carolina court threw out a challenge to Republican Rep. Madison Cawthorn’s candidacy. The same group’s attempts to challenge Arizona legislators were also rejected by a court on Friday. Both cases have been appealed.
A decision on whether or not to remove Greene from consideration for reelection will be made by the administrative court in Georgia before Republican Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger. Due to his own re-election campaign and a potential primary challenge from the GOP, Raffensperger may be reluctant to create political ripples by removing Greene off the ballot before to the primary on May 24.
Judge Charles Beaudrot concluded Friday’s hearing by saying, “This is extraordinarily important stuff.”
As of Thursday, Beaudrot said he expects both parties to provide briefings by midnight, and he plans to make his proposal public within a week of that date.
Regardless of the outcome, an appeal will almost definitely be filed.
It’s possible that eliminating Greene from the ballot isn’t the primary purpose of the challenges.
There is an interest in finding out what role she had during the uprising, and Pate thinks she may be prosecuted with perjury or some other felony for making false statements. “They want to hear her questioning under oath, to find out what participation she had in this rebellion,” Pate adds.
Throughout her district, which extends from Atlanta’s outskirts to the Appalachian foothills and the Tennessee border, Greene is well-liked. It’s one of the most conservative districts in the nation.
Efforts to take on Greene’s followers, says Nancy Hollandchad, a lifelong volunteer with the Paulding County Republican Women, simply strengthen them.
“I support her because she represents my district,” she adds. “Keeping Marjorie off the ballot is not something I support. In their ignorance, they’re encouraging the district to rally behind her even more.”