Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Ga., has been trying her damnedest to block a lawsuit challenging her eligibility to run for re-election this year, but those hopes were crushed by a federal judge Monday.
The suit was filed on behalf of Georgia voters by Texas-based advocacy group Free Speech for People and alleges Greene’s remarks supporting Jan. 6 rioters and appearing to encourage political violence violate the 14th Amendment, which bans those who have engaged in an “insurrection” from serving in Congress. (Greene has denied aiding and engaging in an insurrection.)
In accordance with Georgia law, the voters are asking Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger to rule on whether Greene’s actions disqualify her candidacy. Greene’s attorneys tried to get the case thrown out or stayed, but U.S. District Judge Amy Totenberg on Monday cited multiple reasons why it should be allowed to proceed.
Totenberg said the case “involves a whirlpool of colliding constitutional interests of public import.” She also noted Greene’s “failure to cite persuasive legal authority or even include a developed legal argument that the State of Georgia lacks the authority to enforce an existing constitutional provision.”
As you might imagine, Greene was not happy about the prospect of being questioned under oath for this case, which she told Fox News would happen Friday.
Greene has said she has “never encouraged political violence and never will," and her team has denied that she participated in the planning of the Capitol riot. But she’s right to worry about her upcoming testimony.
Free Speech for People has provided examples of Greene criticizing the peaceful transfer of power after then-President Donald Trump lost the 2020 election, saying the Jan. 6 attack was justified by the Declaration of Independence, and claiming House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., will “suffer death or she’ll be in prison” for treason.
“You can’t allow it to just transfer power peacefully like Joe Biden wants and allow him to become our president because he did not win this election,” Greene said in a video referenced in the lawsuit.
Under oath, and to protect her eligibility in this year’s race, Greene may have to run away from the radical claims that made her a celebrity among her far-right supporters. And if she doesn't reject those claims, she runs the risk of not being on the ballot.