The Shady Side Of Marjorie Taylor Greene

Many political pundits and insiders couldn't get over what happened in Congress on February 6, 2023, when Marjorie Taylor Greene presided over the House of Representatives as a speaker pro tempore, an interim for House Speaker Kevin McCarthy. That her hand grasped the gavel for a day seemed like just desserts for the Georgia Republican Congresswoman, who only a month earlier had abandoned her ultra-right allies in the splinter Freedom Caucus to break a lengthy deadlock and back McCarthy's bid for House Speaker. Her floodgate-opening moment worked, as it helped McCarthy land the job, meaning he'd make good on his apparent promise to give Greene those plum committee roles that Democrats stripped from her the previous term. That she damaged her friendships with Freedom Caucus stalwarts Lauren Boebert and Matt Gaetz seemed irrelevant, now that Greene has become one of the most prominent Republicans in office.

Greene's path to political prosperity was mere baby steps when she first threw her hat into the ring to represent Georgia's 14th District in 2019. From the start, her name's been synonymous with conspiracy theories, questionable Qanon conjecture, and controversial comments targeting ethnic and religious groups (via CNN). Her misinformation gaffes and seemingly poor vocabulary are legendary, including California wildfires caused by "Jewish space lasers," calling Capitol Hill enforcers "gazpacho" police, and Bill Gates incubating meat in a "peach tree dish." These and other shenanigans have the opposition and several colleagues vilifying Greene, who somehow smashed her way into the GOP star chamber. Evidently, she avoided the high road.

She exaggerated her business experience

Growing up in Milledgeville, Georgia, Marjorie Taylor Greene found herself exposed to the business world, as her father ran a company called Taylor Commercial, Inc. in nearby Alpharetta, which likely motivated her to earn a business and marketing degree from the University of Georgia in 1996. Six years later, she and husband Perry Greene bought the company, which eventually listed her as an executive. Since then, Greene has flaunted her entrepreneurial credentials, especially when she later ran for Congress. "I'm a successful business owner," she said on her first campaign video in 2020. "If I ran my company the way Congress is running our federal government, I'd be out of business."

However, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution revealed Greene embellished her involvement in the company, with papers indicating her husband became its sole owner in 2006. Statements issued between 2007 and 2010 sporadically mentioned her as Chief Financial Officer, but that's about it. "If Marjorie Taylor Greene walked in front of me, then I would not have known her," said Ken Blankenship, whose company once worked on a project with Taylor Commercial. Greene's government website revealed she bought Taylor Commercial, neglecting to mention that it was a family business that also involved her husband as a purchaser. Nonetheless, Taylor Commercial seemed convenient for Greene in 2020, when Salon reported that she allegedly took $450,000 from company coffers to finance her campaign, less than a week after the business received a lucrative federal Paid Protection Program loan.

Marjorie Taylor Greene cheated on her husband

Marjorie Taylor Greene might have become persona non grata at contracting company Taylor Commercial Inc., but she was back in business in 2012 after buying a CrossFit franchise the following year. Bitten by the fitness bug, she spent hours working out in the gym facilities she purchased, although whether she did much administrative work is speculative. But in 2021, the Daily Mail broke a story that the future Congresswoman had at least two affairs while at CrossFit, first with self-described "tantric sex guru" Craig Ivey, and then with Justin Tway, the gym's manager. When approached by the tabloid, neither denied the transgressions, but one of them seemed to regret the coupling."I have no interest in talking about anything to do with that woman," responded Tway. "Everything with her comes to no good."

Greene told the paper the story was "ridiculous tabloid garbage spread by an avowed Communist," and calling it "another attempt to smear my name because I'm the biggest threat to the Democrats' Socialist agenda." After the affairs, Greene separated from her husband, but the couple eventually reconciled. In 2022, another split became more permanent when Perry filed for divorce. And while Greene has since sold her franchise, that departure didn't stop CrossFit from taking her conspiratorial remarks to task. Said a company spokesperson to BuzzFeed in 2021, "CrossFit supports respectful fact-based political dialogue to address our common challenges, and we strongly oppose the loathsome and dangerous lies attributed to Ms. Greene."

She started getting conspiratorial online

Before 2017, Marjorie Taylor Greene posted nary a peep online, but that all changed when the MAGA bug seduced her. It started when she began writing blogs for the since-deleted "American Truth Seekers" conspiracy website, where she fully backed outrageous declarations by QAnon, a misinformation source prefacing its existence as supporting President Donald Trump's battle against Democrat Satan worshipers and child abusers (via NBC News). As CNN notes, some of her best-known pieces targeted ill-fated 2016 Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton as an assassin of political opposers, a child-killer and sex trafficker who resorted to murdering a police officer to cover up her gory activities. On social media, Greene became even more relentless as a conspiratorial mouthpiece, declaring that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi be executed, President Barack Obama was actually Muslim, mass shootings were fake leftist orchestrations to erase the Second Amendment, and that the plane that hit the Pentagon on 9/11 never happened. 

All of which resulted in Twitter briefly banning Greene, who lamented at a public gathering, "How do we have porn on Twitter, but conservatives can't speak their freedom of speech?" (via The New Yorker). During Greene's 2020 Republican primary debate against John Cowan to represent Georgia's 14th District, a reporter questioned her controversial comments. Her response was more of a deflection: "I, like many Americans, are disgusted with the deep state who've launched an effort to get rid of President Trump," before placing the blame on Obama, Vice President Joe Biden, and FBI Director James Comey.

Marjorie Taylor Greene's run for Congress was toxic

In 2019, Marjorie Taylor Greene's first choice for a federal seat was her home in Georgia's 6th District, a riding that became too competitive for her taste with several Republicans in the race. Hearing that a favored incumbent in the 14th District was retiring, Greene saw her chance and moved to the area, where she set up her campaign. In 2016, 75% of the population voted for President Donald Trump in the predominantly white riding with very few immigrants, a perfect battleground for Greene. According to CNN, she was already warmed up, having previously badgered Congresswoman Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez at her office, pointed a rifle at a cutout of AOC and members of the hard-left, so-called "Squad" in a since-deleted social media post, per Buzzfeed News, and accosted school shooting survivor David Hogg for supporting tighter gun control measures (via NBC News).

The campaign even saw more traditional Republican officials railing against Greene for her previous videos, social media posts, including one where she remarked: "The most mistreated group of people in the United States today are white males" (via Politico). But according to the largely conservative electorate in the 14th District, none of the allegations seemed to matter. "There's nothing she can do to lose my vote, unless she murdered a baby or something," said one anonymous supporter to The New Yorker. "Nothing." After winning her Republican primary, Greene landed her Congressional seat when her Democratic opponent dropped out of the race.

She's bullied her way around Washington, DC

Marjorie Taylor Green's time in public office so far has hardly been as idyllic as "Mr. Smith Goes to Washington." When President Trump lost a hotly-contested and controversial election to Joe Biden, Greene showed up for her first day on the job wearing a COVID mask declaring "Trump Won." "Just sworn in!" tweeted Greene that day. "Time to get to work." 

If bullying was part of her job description, Greene aced that function in spades. She and her staff apparently "berated" Missouri Democrat Cori Bush, according to CNBC, who reportedly wanted to move her office. The Washington Post reported that Greene stalked Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez in the halls of Capitol Hill, yelling, "You don't care about the American people! Why do you support terrorists and antifa?" During the pandemic, she railed against the quarantine and masking measures, comparing them to the Holocaust, per CNN.

But her biggest presence as a big-time antagonist in Washington, D.C., took place twice, each time during the State of the Union Address in Congress in 2022 and 2023. The first one saw Greene with fellow Republican Lauren Boebert heckling Biden and even trying to start a "build the wall!" chant in recognition of a previous Trump mandate. In 2023, she was seen at the following SOTU shouting "Liar!" at the President (via The New York Times). While her antics riled some Republicans, others weren't worried, since Greene was among the party's top fundraisers, bringing in $3.2 million during her first three months on the job.

Congress kicked Marjorie Taylor Greene off committees

Margorie Taylor Greene may have had an easy time getting into Congress, but after a month on the job, her tempestuous past finally caught up to her. In February 2021, after reviewing Greene's history of spreading QAnon disinformation, suggesting executions of prominent Democrats, as well as concocting racist and anti-Semitic statements, the House of Representatives voted to remove Greene from committees on which she sat. Eleven Republicans joined the Democrats from expelling her from the Education and Labor Committee and Budget Panel in a vote favoring the motion 230-199.

In protest, Greene claimed all those accusations no longer comprise her political values. "I was allowed to believe things that weren't true," she responded in Congress. "I would ask questions about them and talk about them, and that is absolutely what I regret" (via NPR). Shortly after being punted, Greene said she was glad that she no longer had those committee assignments, which she claimed would compromise her Georgian electorate's input into the nation's business. But she also shed light on another opportunity, one far more self-serving. "Now, I have a lot of free time on my hands," Greene said to reporters outside the Capitol building (via Politico), "which means I can talk to a whole lot more people all over this country, and I can talk to more people and make connections and build a huge amount of support."

She was implicated in helping with the insurrection

After Marjorie Taylor Greene's district victory and Donald Trump's presidential loss to Joe Biden in 2020, claims from Trump that the election was rigged surfaced, prompting several meetings, including one December scrum that saw Greene and other allies work with Trump to reverse the results. The strategy involved mobilizing hordes of MAGA faithful on January 6, 2021, to march to Capitol Hill, where Vice President Mike Pence would refuse to ratify the election in Congress. The bid failed, but not before an angry mob stormed the Capitol in an insurrection that shocked the country, with Greene's fingerprints apparently on part of the scheme. Or, at least apparent enough to warrant a hearing the following year in Georgia to determine if Greene should be kicked out of Congress (via The Guardian).

Prosecutors grilled Greene over anecdotes linking her to the insurrection, such as calling it "our 1776 moment," and texting Trump's Chief of Staff Mark Meadows that the only way for the President to stay in power was to declare "Marshall [sic] law," per CNBC. In most cases, Greene testified that she had no recollection of those events. According to PBS, although the judge decided that there wasn't enough evidence to implicate her in the insurrection, Greene shockingly revisited the incident at a New York Republican Club later that year. "If [former Trump strategist] Steve Bannon and I had organized that, we would have won," she said (via CNN). "Not to mention it would have been armed."

Marjorie Taylor Greene ignored her constituents

When Marjorie Taylor Greene was elected for a second Congressional term in November 2022, she pledged to continue serving Georgia's 14th District electorates, the very folks who put her in power in the first place. "I'm honored to represent the values of Northwest Georgia," she said during her victory speech. "I honor you by leading with my Christian faith and by focusing on traditional family values, I believe in putting American workers and American small businesses first." But her record in Congress hardly reflected that dedication. According to CNN, during her first term in office, Greene introduced 16 bills, including 3 to impeach Joe Biden, 2 to throw Democrat Maxine Waters off the Financial Services Committee and out of Congress, and 2 to award Congressional gold medals to Kyle Rittenhouse (a man acquitted of shooting people during a riot) and police officers tangling with Black Lives Matter protesters. 

She introduced one ill-fated bill affecting Georgians, honoring Michael D'Angelo Garigan, a sheriff who died of COVID. A 2023 bill proposed a name change to the federal building in Rome, a city near Atlanta, well beyond Greene's district borders. That overall lack of attention to her home turf was noticed by political pundit S.E. Cupp, whose op-ed deduced Green's real motive for entering politics. "She wasn't interested in public service, which is what her job is," said Cupp to CNN. "She was coming to Congress to get famous. It's pretty clear that's what she's always wanted." 

She trashed communities like Muslims and the LGBTQ

Once elected to Congress, Marjorie Taylor Greene has made plenty of noise pushing the values of the far right, while expressing contempt for certain minorities. For openers, as ABC 7 News reports, Greene has declared open season on the LGBTQ community by calling openly-gay California Senator Scott Wiener a "communist groomer," hosting an anti-trans rally in Washington, D.C., pushing for the demise of Pride Month, and ringing alarm bells over the eventual demise of heterosexual humans. "Probably in about four or five generations, no one will be straight anymore," lamented Greene (via Forbes). "Everyone will be either gay or trans or nonconforming or whatever the list of 50 or 60 different options there are."

Greene has also made several anti-Muslim statements online, including one video in 2020, when she declared (via Politico), "There is an Islamic invasion into our government offices," after 3 Muslims were re-elected into the House of Representatives. Another video shared on Twitter in 2021 featured Greene believing President Barack Obama was a Muslim and that "he opened up our borders to an invasion by Muslims." She has also been bullish in pushing an anti-immigration mandate, as evidenced by a fearful declaration she made at a 2022 Trump Rally. "Joe Biden's 5 million illegal aliens are on the verge of replacing you, replacing your jobs, and replacing your kids in school," said Greene (via Forbes). "And coming from all over the world, they're also replacing your culture. And that's not great for America."

Marjorie Taylor Greene spoke at a white nationalist event

If Marjorie Taylor Greene's detractors were asked to cite one event where she showed off her true colors, odds are they'd point to the infamous America First Political Action Conference held in 2022 in Orlando Florida. Greene was the guest speaker at the event attended by followers of the far right, many of them adherents to white nationalism. "You know what it's like to be canceled," she said from the podium. "That's why I'm here to talk to you tonight. I don't believe anyone should be canceled."

Greene received heat for speaking at AFPAC, organized by Nick Fuentes, an activist notorious for his racist and anti-Semitic statements. Prominent Republicans that included Mitch McConnell, Mike Pompeo, and Mitt Romney denounced Greene for her AFPAC appearance, even though the Congresswoman denied that she even knew Fuentes or about the conference mandate (via National Review). Claiming she didn't support AFPAC's values, Greene still had to speak at the event to invigorate the right wing. "It wasn't an alignment," she said to CBS News. "It was to talk about getting everyone together to save our country." 

That said, Greene has made it no secret that she's a Christian nationalist, following a philosophy that America was founded on Christian principles and that the government doesn't actually separate church and state. "We need to be the party of nationalism and I'm a Christian," said Greene (via Politico), "and I say it proudly, we should be Christian Nationalists."