A new poll shows Republican voters prefer Marjorie Taylor Greene over Liz Cheney by a wide margin — poll conducted before Greene’s denouncement of conspiracy theories today (and getting booted from two House committees)
It’s been quite the 24-hour whirlwind inside the House of Representatives, which culminated in a party-line vote today to strip MTG (Marjorie Taylor Greene) of two committee assignments due to her incendiary remarks, videos and social media posts espousing violence against other House members. The vote on House Resolution 72, Removing a certain Member from certain standing committees of the House of Representatives, occurred mostly along party lines but with a surprising number of Republicans — 11 — joining Democrats. Only a simple majority was needed to remove Greene from her Budget and Education/Labor committees.
The penultimate drama surrounding Liz Cheney (R-WY) and Greene (R-GA) first played out on the House floor last night in historic and schizophrenic fashion. By secret ballot the GOP caucus voted overwhelmingly to allow Cheney, the No. 3 House Republican, to retain her leadership position despite Cheney (along with nine other Republicans) joining Democrats in a vote to impeach Donald Trump. At the same time Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy refused to strip Greene of both her committee assignments (he did try to bargain with Dems and remove Greene from only Education/Labor, but that was rejected), even as he condemned her inflammatory rhetoric and claimed not to know what the conspiracy group QAnon was.
McCarthy, who effectively “split the baby,” said he was satisfied by Greene’s feeble explanation on the House floor that she no longer believed the QAnon conspiracy theories she marinated in all the way back in 2017-2018 before she was elected to Congress two years later. Her speech, which occurred impromptu as members were considering Cheney’s post removal, was not aired publicly but was reprised on the House floor today in front of cameras hours before the majority voted to kick her off her committee assignments.
Before diving further into Green’s lackluster backpedaling on her conspiracy theories, it must be noted that Axios/Survey Monkey just released a poll showing the majority of Republican voters surveyed overwhelmingly identified more with Greene versus Cheney. The poll, conducted Feb 1-2 online and which surveyed 2,691 adults, is a stinging reminder of how pervasive Trumpism is in the Republican Party.
Separate polling questions also point to a conspiracy element among a not insignificant portion of these same Republican voters. As Axios points out, “People who identify with Greene are disproportionately likely to have lost faith in democracy or believe despite evidence that voter fraud is rampant in their state.” [Editor’s note — italic emphasis is mine.]
Back to Greene’s disingenuous denouncement of her QAnon beliefs. She explained on the House floor today that she became involved in QAnon in late 2017, at a time when she had lost faith in the media and government. Greene’s resurfaced social media posts do indeed confirm her adherence to QAnon conspiracies including that the 9-11 terrorist attacks and Fla. Parkland school shootings were a hoax, that Jewish space lasers cause Calif. wildfires, and former president Trump was leading the charge to take down a cabal of Democratic pedophiles .. to name just a few. At one time she wrote for a now-defunct conspiracy blog submitting posts with headlines like “MUST READ — Democratic Party Involved With Child Sex, Satanism, and The Occult.”
Today Greene did walk back her previous beliefs about 9-11 and the Parkland school shooting, and then explained in her speech that at some point in 2018 she started noticing “misinformation” in QAnon social media posts and “I stopped believing it.” However, this is demonstrably false, according to Former Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-MO), who appeared on MSNBC in today’s segment of Nicolle Wallace’s Deadline Whitehouse.
McCaskill said that just “on Dec. 4, [Greene] said that an article that called QAnon objective information and unifying for Christians was accurate,” noting the timeline was far outside this 2018 benchmark of departing from Q and after she was elected to Congress in 2020. “She’s lying on the floor of the House in order to avoid being removed from her committees,” McCaskill added.
But most importantly, what was missing in Greene’s lengthy floor speech today was any apology for the following:
1.) “liking” a 2019 Facebook post that advocated “a bullet to the head” of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.)
2.) in 2019 stalking and harassing Parkland school shooting survivor David Hogg, then a teenager, whom she hurled conspiracy theories at and whined that he wanted to take away her guns, and filmed the whole thing for her YouTube channel. The shameful video now lives in various social media archives.
3.) a Sept 2020 Facebook ad where she posed with an assault rifle and three female Democratic members of Congress who are also women of color, including Muslim Rep Ilhan Omar — Greene has a history of Islamophobic and bigoted remarks on social media and previously wrote wrote that Muslims do not belong in government. (Rep Steny Hoyer (D-MD) brought a large poster of this ad to the House floor with him for tonight’s one-hour debate on ousting Greene from her committees)
4.) her 2020-2021 egregious promotion of The Big Lie about a stolen election, through rhetoric, posts and videos including this pre-election clip where she endorsed political violence by saying “The only way you get your freedoms back is it’s earned with the price of blood.”
Greene should know by now that every traitorous and hateful thing she’s done or said leaves a digital trail. And her history-revising floor speech fooled no one … no one, that is, except for the feckless 199 Republicans who couldn’t be bothered to think critically or wanted to use it as cover for putting party over country tonight.