WASHINGTON — Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Ga., on Friday repeatedly deflected questions about her involvement in the Capitol riot on Jan. 6, 2021, and efforts by former President Donald Trump to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election.
Free Speech for People, an election and campaign finance reform organization, filed a lawsuit last month on behalf of a group of Georgia voters, alleging that Greene facilitated the attack on the Capitol. Greene testified under oath for nearly four hours as a witness during the hearing, as challengers make their case against her eligibility to run for re-election.
Greene was asked numerous questions about if she had any connection to the events that occurred on Jan. 6, 2021, and in the days leading up to the riot. The congresswoman said she was aware people had planned to come to Washington, D.C., to "support our objection" to the election results in Congress.
Asked when she first became aware that there would be a large demonstration on that day, Greene said, "I don't recall." Asked if she considered participating in the demonstration, Greene said it was on her calendar but she was too busy preparing to oppose the Electoral College vote totals, which confirmed President Joe Biden’s victory.
Greene, who was sworn into Congress a few days before the riot, also said she didn't remember speaking to people about the planned demonstrations for Jan. 6.
"I don't remember" was an answer she gave frequently during the hearing Friday.
She offered the same response when asked if she had spoken to anyone in the White House about Jan. 6, and said she couldn't "recall" if anyone had ever mentioned to her that the events could turn violent.
Pointing to the 14th Amendment’s prohibition on anyone who “engaged in insurrection or rebellion” from running for federal or state office, the suit alleges that Greene is ineligible to run because she engaged in obstructing the transfer of presidential power, in part through her rhetoric challenging the election results.
Asked if she had ever said House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., is a traitor to the country, Greene said she hadn't made such a comment. The attorney then presented evidence that she did make that statement.
She also deflected when asked if she had liked a post about a bullet to Pelosi's head: "I have had many people manage my social media account over the years. I have no idea who liked that."
Andrew Celli, an attorney for the plaintiffs, said in his closing arguments that the congresswoman “was one of several leader who gathered the kindling, who created the conditions made it possible for there to be an explosion of violence at the Capitol on Jan. 6."
Greene's attorney, James Bopp, dismissed the day's events as a "political show trial."
"We come into a hearing with all these cameras and all these live-streaming — why are they interested in this? Because Representative Greene’s on the ballot? No. This is a political agenda."
Attorneys on both sides have until Thursday to submit briefs to the court. The judge said he plans to finalize his recommendation "about a week later."
That recommendation will then go to Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, who will decide whether Greene remains on the ballot for the state's May 24 primary.
With early voting slated to begin on May 2, it's possible some voters will have cast their ballots before the issue is resolved.
Greene’s attorney has filed an appeal in federal court to stop the challenge altogether.