Could Marjorie Taylor Greene be blocked from office?

A federal judge will have final say this week regarding whether a group of voters seeking to block Marjorie Taylor Greene from mounting a reelection campaign will see their case move forward or end in failure.

The controversial Georgia congresswoman is the second GOP member of the House to be targeted by a legal effort to block favored supporters of former President Donald Trump’s attempts to overturn the 2020 election from seeking office under the 14th amendment to the US Constitution, which prohibits those who “shall have engaged in insurrection or rebellion” against the US from holding federal office.

A similar effort against Rep. Madison Cawthorn failed in recent weeks in North Carolina. But some Democrats are finding reason to hope that this time will be different for one key reason: Judge Amy Totenberg.

Ms Totenberg, the sister of NPR Supreme Court correspondent Nina Totenberg, was appointed to the bench by former President Barack Obama, unlike the Trump-appointed judge who threw out the bid to oust Mr Cawthorn from office in North Carolina. She has issued rulings in the past that challenged state Republican officials who sought to quickly certify the contested 2018 gubernatorial race and also blocked a GOP-led effort to end touchscreen voting in the state; for those reasons and others, she is seen as potentially more sympathetic to the effort than she was the judge in Mr Cawthorn’s case, a conservative and member of the Federalist Society.

Ms Greene’s fate is also facing new questions after Judge Totenberg indicated on Friday that she had “significant questions and concerns” about the ruling handed down last month allowing Mr Cawthorn to run for a second term unimpeded.

At the same time, Judge Totenberg said that she would issue a ruling on Ms Greene’s bid to dismiss the case this week. An attorney affiliated with the plaintiffs in the case told The Independent on Monday that they still expected a decision before the day was over.

Ms Greene is represented by the same attorney, James Bopp Jr., who represented Mr Cawthorn in his case.

“This is a concerted, well-funded national effort to undermine our democracy by disqualifying eligible people from running for office,” Mr Bopp said last month of the efforts to disqualify Mr Cawthorn and other members of Congress who supported false claims about a stolen election in 2020 and 2021.

One of the issues likely to come before the court if the case is allowed to proceed is whether Ms Greene was involved in the organizing or planning of a “Stop the Steal”-themed rally in Washington on the day of the attack on Congress.

rolling stone reported in late 2021 that Ms Greene was accused by at least one rally organizer of involvement, a charge her office denied.

“I remember Marjorie Taylor Greene specifically,” a person described as an organizer of one of the two rallies that day told rolling stone in October. “I remember talking to probably close to a dozen other members at one point or another or their staffs.”

Ms Greene’s spokesman Nick Dyer responded at the time: “Congresswoman Greene and her staff were focused on the Congressional election objection on the House floor and had nothing to do with planning of any protest.”

The legal argument being decided this week revolves around whether a post-Civil War law meant to ease supporters of the rebel confederacy back into society known as the Amnesty Act of 1872 would apply in the case of Ms Greene, as the North Carolina judge ruled it did not for Mr Cawthorn.

According to CNN, Judge Totenberg questioned last week whether that law was meant to apply to future instances of rebellion or insurrection, declaring: “I don’t think that the Amnesty Act likely was prospective.”

A decision this week will only determine if the case moves forward. If Judge Totenberg rules against Ms Greene’s bid for dismissal, the road to blocking her from office would still be long and likely lead to a showdown at the Georgia Supreme Court.

Ms Greene is running for a second term in a Georgia district redrawn during her first term; as a result of that decision as well as her history of controversial comments, she faces a number of Republican primary challengers as well as Democrats seeking to face her in November.

The congresswoman remains stripped of her committees after it was revealed that she had expressed support in the past for violence against Democrats such as Nancy Pelosi, the Speaker of the House. She has continued to seek the spotlight throughout her first term and most recently made headlines after she chose to speak at a convention hosted by a white nationalist, Nick Fuentes.

House Republican leaders have condemned both her and Mr Cawthorn in recent months, though Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy has suggested that he is open to letting Ms Greene return to her committees should the GOP retake the House in the fall.

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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