The House voted Thursday to decide whether to remove Marjorie Taylor Greene, aka the “QAnon congresswoman,” from her committee assignments based on her history of controversial comments, including liking comments on Facebook that called for the execution of Nancy Pelosi and other prominent Democrats. Eleven Republicans, including Rep. Adam Kinzinger, sided with Democrats, but the vote was otherwise along party lines, 230-199.
“QAnon has no place in Congress,” a spokesperson for Kinzinger told Forbes reporter Andrew Solender, adding, “While he respects the voice of the people and their right to elect [Greene], he does not agree with the decision to give her a committee seat.”
The vote comes one day after the House Rules Committee forwarded a resolution proposing Greene be removed from the Budget and Education committees. Before the vote, Greene delivered a speech where she said she regrets some of the things she said.
In past remarks, Greene has promoted baseless conspiracy theories. She falsely claimed that the 2018 mass murder at a Parkland, Fla., high school was a “false flag planned shooting” to generate support for gun control. And in 2018 she absurdly said there was “never any evidence shown for a plane [hitting] the Pentagon” on September 11, 2001. She also claimed that former president Barrack Obama hired members of the MS-13 gang to assassinate DNC staffer Seth Rich, who died in 2016, and that laser beams from space were causing California wildfires. And she endorsed then-president Donald Trump’s false claims that the election was stolen.
“These are words of the past and they do not represent me,” she said. Although she did not specify which exact words she regrets, she did concede that “9/11 absolutely happened” and that “school shootings are absolutely real.”
Greene also claimed that her controversial comments all came before she ran for Congress. But as CNN’s Andrew Kaczynski pointed out on Twitter, in July of 2020, Greene said of the anonymous poster known as Q, from which the QAnon movement takes its name, “I’ve only ever seen patriotic sentiment coming out of that source.”
Greene says she didn’t talk about Qanon during her campaign, but in a local interview in July she said, “l’ve only ever seen patriotic sentiment coming out of that source.”
— andrew kaczynski (@KFILE) February 4, 2021
Ahead of the vote, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi expressed concern that Republicans were not rebuking Greene. Democrats had urged Republicans to act to punish Greene but called a House vote after Republican Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy refused to remove her from her committee assignments. Republicans previously had acted as a party to remove then-Rep. Steve King over comments about white supremacy.
“I remain profoundly concerned about House Republicans’ leadership acceptance of extreme conspiracy theorists,” the speaker said at her weekly news conference Thursday. “Particularly disturbing is their eagerness to reward a QAnon adherent, a 9/11 truther, a harasser of child survivors of school shootings.”
But despite her earlier “apology,” Greene continued to spread lies in her fundraising emails as lawmakers debated her fate. In the email sent by her campaign, Greene accused Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a frequent target of Greene’s vitriol, of encouraging her supporters to “punch a cop.” Ocasio-Cortez, of course, said no such thing.
This post has been updated.