During a House Homeland Security hearing on Tuesday (April 18), Democrats tried twice to strike comments from Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.), but the Committee failed to reprimand her over an accusation that a colleague was having an extramarital affair while agreeing to withdraw comments about Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas being a liar.
It was a rare incident of Republicans agreeing to block Greene’s speech.
Chairman Mark Green (R-Tenn.) seemed shocked to realize that agreeing to “take down” her comments rather than striking them from the record would terminate her rights to speak in the hearing.
Immediately, Democrats moved to have Greene’s remarks stricken, claiming they violated House rules against making personality attacks, and Greene refused to voluntarily retract them.
Greene made her comments about Democratic Rep. Eric Swalwell (CA.), which came after it was reported in 2020 that the FBI had warned him that a suspected Chinese spy had helped raise money for his 2014 reelection campaign.
Swalwell has repeatedly denied any inappropriate interactions with the woman, Christine Fang, including an extramarital affair, and the agency says there is no indication he shared classified intelligence with her.
After Chairman Green rejected the motion, Democratic Representative Bennie Thompson (Miss.) appealed the decision.
Thompson noted he’d been on the Committee since its inception, explaining an accusation like Greene’s had never been made against another member, claiming the Committee should be “embarrassed,” adding that the Committee is “better than” Greene’s remarks.
The motion to have Greene’s comments stricken failed on an 11-9 party-line vote.
However, Democrats succeeded in preventing Greene from speaking again after she described Mayorkas as a “liar” and claimed he wasn’t stemming the tide of Fentanyl into the U.S.