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Rep. Greene questions whether July 4 shootings were 'designed' to get Republicans to back gun control

Greene suggested without evidence this week that some antidepressants, known as SSRIs, are to blame for the mass shootings.
Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Ga., speaks as she offers an amendment as the House Rules Committee prepared the bipartisan Senate gun bill for the House floor on June 24, 2022.
Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Ga., offers an amendment as the Rules Committee prepares the bipartisan Senate gun bill for the House floor on June 24.J. Scott Applewhite / AP file

WASHINGTON — Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Ga., suggested in a videotaped podcast this week that the shootings on the Fourth of July, including the one in Highland Park, Illinois, were “designed” to get Republicans to support gun restrictions.

“Here’s what I have to say. I mean. Two shootings on July 4: one in a rich white neighborhood and the other at a fireworks display. It almost sounds like it’s designed to persuade Republicans to go along with more gun control. I mean, after all, we didn’t see that happen at all the pride parades in the month of June,” Greene said.

“But as soon as we hit the MAGA month,” she continued, “as soon as we hit the month that we’re all celebrating, loving our country, we have shootings on July 4. I mean, that’s ... oh, you know, that would sound like a conspiracy theory, right?”

Law enforcement officials said Wednesday that the suspect in the Highland Park shooting, who is accused of killing seven people at a Fourth of July parade, confessed to the shooting in detail. He has been charged with seven counts of first-degree murder; authorities have said they don’t want to speculate about possible motives.

Greene’s office blamed attention on her remarks on a left-leaning Twitter account, which it accused of spreading lies. She also tweeted a statement from her office saying she was just raising questions about the shootings, without making a statement of fact about what happened.

The office of House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment on Greene’s remarks.

Since the mass shootings Monday, Greene has repeatedly tweeted that “gun control laws” don’t prevent such massacres.

She also rejected the idea that firearms are to blame and instead suggested that antidepressants known as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, or SSRIs, are to blame for the shootings. There’s no evidence that the suspect was taking such drugs.

“When are we going to talk about drugs and SSRI’s? When are they going to release the shooters records? Why wasn’t his threats of mass shootings in his videos taken seriously by LE that knew about him?” she tweeted Tuesday, presumably referring to law enforcement. “What did his parents know? Gun control won’t stop this epidemic of evil.”

Millions of people have taken the medications to treat anxiety and depression for decades, and there is no evidence that supports Greene’s assertion.