It may be the 21st century, but the QAnon congresswoman is urging folks to take up arms against their sea of troubles.
During a podcast interview with none other than the bombastic former Trump adviser Sebastian Gorka, Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) loudly nodded at the “Second Amendment” as a solution to the far-right’s problems — in this case the “tyrannical government,” aka (for her) Democrats. Greene suggested Democratic lawmakers are currently doing exactly what the founders feared when James Madison proposed the inclusion of Second Amendment rights in the Constitution.
She was responding to a question from Gorka about Georgia’s Democratic gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams recent call for gun reform in the state. As no newbie to violent threats — and the repercussions of said threats — Greene even seemed to catch herself toward the end of the diatribe, calling her pseudo-violent remarks a “shame” and suggesting Americans “shouldn’t have to think that way,” before attempting to cast the call-to-arms as an innocent defense of state rights.
Here’s the full quote:
“Ultimately the truth is it’s our Second Amendment rights, our right to bear arms, that protects Americans and give us the ability to defend ourselves from a tyrannical government. And I hate to use this language but Democrats, they’re exactly — they’re doing exactly what our founders talked about when they gave us the precious rights that we have.”
“And you know, no one wants violence and I say all the time I am not a violent person. I hope to never see a civil war in this country and that’s why you hear me toss around ‘national divorce.’ The federal government has grown so big and the Democrats are willing to use the power of the federal government, that it really violates people’s rights and that’s why state rights are so important. It’s a shame, we shouldn’t think that way, but I don’t know what’s going to happen in the future, but we always have to make sure that we are defending our Second Amendment rights and making sure that our state rights are protected.”
Invoking the specter of a violent democratic crisis, with terms like “national divorce,” is on brand for Greene, but also for other far-right lawmakers who have not-so-subtly pointed to the Second Amendment in recent months when speaking to friendly audiences.
Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-GA) said basically the same thing during a Trumpian rally with Greene last year when he raised the Second Amendment while discussing Democrats, whom they opine are, at the moment, synonymous with tyrannical federal governments.
“It’s not about hunting, it’s not about recreation, it’s not about sports,” he said in May 2021. “The Second Amendment is about maintaining, within the citizenry, the ability to maintain an armed rebellion against the government if that becomes necessary.”
The remark was met with explosive applause. He also tried to backtrack:
“I hope it never does,” he shouted over the hooting and hollering, “but it sure is important to recognize the founding principles of this nation and to make sure that they are fully understood.”
Rep. Madison Cawthorn (R-NC) touched on similar themes last year, when he foreshadowed “bloodshed” in future U.S. elections while talking about Trump’s Big Lie. In remarks made the day after the Jan. 6 insurrection, Rep. Mo Brooks (R-AL) justified Trump supporters’ frustration with what he and other Trumpers have pegged as a stolen election, comparing the 2020 election to “socialist Germany” and suggesting people had three options back then: they could either “emigrate,” “submit” or “resist, often through violence.”
Brooks also had a caveat here, adding: “None of those three options are good.”
And Trump himself has, of course, also insinuated the use of violence for political ends. While not as explicit as his toadies, it’s part of why he’s being investigated for incitement of the insurrection.
The Best Of TPM Today
Here’s what you should read this evening:
Another day, another Jan. 6 committee update: Jan. 6 Committee Reveals Another Text From A Fox Host To Meadows
And this: Jan. 6 Committee Requests Info From Minority Leader McCarthy
Catch up on today’s voting rights coverage: Senate Plans Out Next Steps In Voting Rights Push
Kemp makes a lame joke: Kemp Pretends Karma Played A Role In Georgia Sports Wins After Backlash To Voting Laws
Gaetz-gate: NBC: Gaetz’s Ex-Girlfriend Testifying In Front Of Grand Jury
Fauci Confirms Omicron Will Infect Most. But That Doesn’t Necessarily Mean More Illness.
Trump is mad at DeSantis: Trump Jabs At ‘Gutless’ GOPers Who Won’t Say If They Got Boosters
Neo-Nazi Leader Slapped With 7-Year Sentence For Threatening Journos And Anti-Semitism Group
Two great pieces in TPM Cafe today: A 21st-Century Reinvention Of The Electric Grid Is Crucial For Solving The Climate Change Crisis
And: Arbery’s Murder Showed ‘Southern Hospitality’ Doesn’t Apply To Black People
Yesterday’s Most Read Story
A Devout Christian Conservative Kicked Off His Campaign For Governor With… A Shofar? — Matt Shuham
What We Are Reading
There’s a growing push in Congress to limit lawmakers’ ability to trade stocks — Ylan Mui
Ye Planning Russia Trip to Meet Putin and Perform Sunday Service, Says Advisor — Colin Stutz
January 6 and the F Word — John Ganz