Marjorie Taylor Greene removed from House committees

On Thursday, Feb. 4, 2021, the House voted for Marjorie Taylor Greene, the U.S. representative of Georgia’s 14th congressional district, to be removed from her committee assignments. The vote favored her removal 230 to 199. Of the 230 representatives that voted, 11 were Republicans. 

According to Mike DeBonis of The Washington Post, “As recently as last year, Greene had been an open adherent of the QAnon ideology, a sprawling and violent web of false claims that played a role in inspiring the Capitol attack.”

In addition to her support of QAnon, a far-right cult, Greene has supported other dangerous and discredited conspiracy theories regarding the events of school shootings and 9/11. Professor of Political Science at Guilford College Maria Rosales provided her thoughts on these theories

“A political theorist, Robyn Marasco, concluded, ‘A conspiracy theory is a love affair with power that poses as its critique. Like so many love affairs, it is based on a fantasy about its beloved,’” said Rosales. “Representative Greene’s conspiracy theories fit perfectly within this assessment. They are not only inaccurate, but they also support unjust hierarchies. They make democracy itself more difficult.” 

“I am appalled by how she (Greene) uses baseless conspiracy theories to incite violence against her political opponents, and to trivialize the pain experienced by those who have lost loved ones to gun violence,” added Assistant Professor of History Sarah Thuesen.

Minutes before the House voted on Thursday, Greene denounced a few of the conspiracy theories that she had been involved with and claimed that she was a victim of misinformation.  In his article, DeBonis stated that, like many other Americans, “Greene was allowed to believe things that weren’t true.” 

Thuesen expressed her disappointment in Greene’s tendency to spread these conspiracies. “It is both ironic and offensive that Greene rails against ‘fake news’ since both she and our former president, whom Greene idolizes, have fabricated more stories than anyone,” she said.

Is Greene a leader? The House votes no. 

Guilford professor of political science Ken Gilmore agrees with the House, saying: “Marjorie Taylor Greene is a danger to the republic and to our democratic form of government. I can’t decide if she is an opportunist (who knowingly lies to gain power and fame), or simply a conspiratorial, racist whack-job, or both. Either way, she doesn’t belong in Congress.” 

Greene is not the only politician to adopt radical, inappropriate ideals. Both the Democratic and Republican Parties have employed their fair share of radicalism, but at what point is it too far? In other words, when does it become dangerous, as seen with Greene?

“People are free to be as stupid as they would like, but as the Capitol attack has shown us, the structural power and platform given to elected officials increases the potential for damage from inflammatory comments,” said Associate Professor of History Damon Akins.

Greene’s removal has incited many other feelings amongst the public, particularly in regard to the Trump administration. According to Kristina Peterson and Andrew Restuccia of the Wall Street Journal, Greene said that prior to her removal, “she spoke with former President Donald Trump and has his support.”

Peterson and Restuccia also reported that Greene was an avid supporter of Trump’s “false claims of election fraud and his unsuccessful effort to block Congress’s certification of Democrat Joe Biden’s election win.”

“I’m offended by what she (Greene) has said,” Akins stated. “I am also offended by the callous disregard by many politicians of the economic hardships faced by people across the country over the last year. I’m offended by the smarmy and narcissistic self-aggrandizement by a number of politicians. I’m tired of seeing old, white men talk-down to women and people of color in Congress. The list of things politicians have done throughout history that offend me could fill a book… a big book. Many of those offenses are what motivate me to work to elect better people.”