Will GOP expel Marjorie Taylor Greene? Adam Kinzinger wants Rep gone after she likens Holocaust to Covid mandate
Minority leader Kevin McCarthy has also condemned Marjorie Taylor Greene and has called her comments 'appalling'
Donald Trump managed to unify the Republican party in 2016. In 2021, his strongest supporter Marjorie Taylor Greene is seemingly splitting the party as she has gained some Republicans' anger. Greene has constantly drawn the ire of Democrats for her controversial and racist statements, but now it seems even some Republicans are fed up.
House minority leader Kevin McCarthy has led the latest round of condemnation. Republican infighting is nothing new, the party is engaged in a battle between the state legislature in Arizona and Maricopa County. However, now fractures have emerged at the national level.
At the heart of the matter is Greene's strange obsession to compare mask mandates with having to wear the Star of David in Nazi Germany. Despite public backlash, she has only doubled down with statements to the press and tweets. That seems to have crossed a line with McCarthy, and few others.
Green on the warpath against mask mandates
The controversy that Greene is embroiled in stems from comments she made on a conservative podcast. On May 21, Greene appeared on 'The Water Cooler', a podcast by Christian Broadcasting Network's David Brody. On the show, she told Brody that being forced to wear a mask or get vaccinated is “exactly the type of abuse” Jews faced in Nazi Germany. That quick line drew ample ire, but she refused to apologize.
On Sunday, May 23, Greene told a reporter "I said nothing wrong. I think any rational Jewish person didn't like what happened in Nazi Germany. And any rational Jewish person doesn't like what's happening with overbearing mask mandates and overbearing vaccine policies." On Tuesday, May 25, she followed up her statements with a tweet, saying, "Vaccinated employees get a vaccination logo just like the Nazi’s forced Jewish people to wear a gold star. Vaccine passports & mask mandates create discrimination against unvaxxed people who trust their immune systems to a virus that is 99% survivable."
Vaccinated employees get a vaccination logo just like the Nazi’s forced Jewish people to wear a gold star.— Marjorie Taylor Greene 🇺🇸 (@mtgreenee) May 25, 2021
Vaccine passports & mask mandates create discrimination against unvaxxed people who trust their immune systems to a virus that is 99% survivable.https://t.co/6X6VNolcA7
That tweet seemed to be the last straw, with Reps McCarthy and Adam Kinzinger, and Sen Liz Cheney hitting out against the Georiga Representative. So far, the three are the only Republicans to condemn Greene directly, with Rep Elise Stefanik and Sen Mitch McConnell also offering some words of condemnation. That's the most number of Republicans that have condemned Greene to date.
Kinzinger wants Greene gone
Shortly after Greene's tweet, Cheney told the Casper Star-Tribune, "What she is saying is evil. It’s vile. I think that we need to hold her accountable." McCarthy issued a more measured rebuke. He published a statement and said, "Marjorie is wrong, and her intentional decision to compare the horrors of the Holocaust with wearing masks is appalling. At a time when the Jewish people face increased violence and threats, anti-Semitism is on the rise in the Democrat Party and is completely ignored by Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Americans must stand together to defeat anti-Semitism and any attempt to diminish the history of the Holocaust. Let me be clear: the House Republican Conference condemns this language."
Rep Elise Stefanik, who recently replaced Cheney as the No 3 House GOP leader, said "equating mask wearing and vaccines to the Holocaust" minimized "the most significant human atrocities ever committed." Rep Kinzinger though, offered a sharply contrasting view. In an interview with Politico, he said, "What we can do as a party is take a stand and say you don’t belong in our conference. That’s what I think we should do. I think we should kick her out of the conference, prevent her from coming to conference meetings, benefiting from conference materials." He admitted he hadn't spoken with McCarthy about removing Greene, but said, "we’re going to be looking at what we can do."
The Air Force veteran also tweeted against Greene, saying, "MTG’s comments comparing the mask rules to the Holocaust are despicable. As a party it’s time to say enough is enough- I call on the NRCC to donate her political contributions to the holocaust museum. She does NOT represent the party or our values."
MTG’s comments comparing the mask rules to the Holocaust are despicable. As a party it’s time to say enough is enough- I call on the NRCC to donate her political contributions to the holocaust museum. She does NOT represent the party or our values.— Adam Kinzinger (@AdamKinzinger) May 25, 2021
In February, however, McCarthy had refused to take action against Greene for past comments, leading the House to strip her of her committee assignments. At the time, 11 Republicans joined with all the democrats to back the resolution. Around that time, even Senator Mitch McConnell joined the condemnation and said she "is not living in reality" and called her comments "loony lies".
McConnell has also weighed in on the latest controversy, calling Greene's comments "once again an outrageous and reprehensible." Those words, while not as strong as Cheney's or Kinzinger's, indicate that the GOP is increasingly being forced to confront the firebrand conservative, and reality. But removing Greene from Congress may be a step too far, even for Democrats. In March, Speaker Nancy Pelosi called a resolution to expel Greene "not that of Democratic leadership." Whether she will remains to be seen.