Hey, Kevin McCarthy-- Hateful, Divisive Bigots Like Marjorie Taylor Greene Have No Place In Congress
It took two hard-fought cycles, but last year Marie Newman beat the last Democratic homophobic incumbent in Congress, reactionary Blue Dog Dan Lipinski, and went on to win a Chicagoland seat in Congress. Now her office is across the hall from vicious homophobic psychopath Marjorie Taylor Greene. Yesterday, Greene tried to prevent the House from moving on David Cicilline's bill that is meant to prohibit "discrimination against members of the LGBTQ community in the areas of employment, education, credit, jury service, federal funding, housing, and public accommodations."
At 1:30 in the afternoon, Greene proposed adjourning Congress. Her motion failed 202-214, basically all the Democrats voting against and all the Republicans voting for. Interestingly, 3 California Republicans who don't want to be associated with anti-gay bigots-- David Valadao, Tom McClintock and Doug LaMalfa-- refused to vote and Florida closet case, Matt Gaetz, who knows he will be eventually be exposed as a hypocrite for voting against gay equality, also avoided the vote, as did another Florida Republican Brian Mast, who has a large LGBTQ community in his district.
Greene used all the ugly right-wing homophobic tropes, calling equality for members of the LGBTQ community "disgusting, immoral, and evil" and falsely claiming Cicilline's legislation would "destroy women’s rights and religious freedoms." The only Republican to publicly speak out against her bigotry and hatred was Adam Kinzinger (R-IL):
Pramila Jayapal (D-WA), who also has a transgender child also wrote a warm and supportive tweet, filled with the kind of love that has made Pramila one of the most admired members of Congress:
No one in this tragic debate over GOP so-called "family values" has mentioned that Marjorie Taylor Greene is an adulteress, compulsive sex maniac and serial drug addict. But she has a defender in the House as well, fellow QAnon crackpot and high school dropout, widely considered the most ignorant member in the entire Congress, Boebert was up and tweeting, spewing her ugly and vicious bigotry, before noon:
This morning, in an e-mail to supporters, Newman wrote that "
Yesterday was a day of joy and pain. Joy as I voted to pass the Equality Act to ensure that no one can be denied housing, education, or other rights simply because of their gender identity or sexual orientation. Joy as I rose on behalf of my transgender daughter Evie-- the strongest, bravest person I know. Pain as I listened to GOP congressmembers like Marjorie Taylor Greene use their platforms to spew lies and bigotry on the House floor in opposition to this crucial anti-discrimination legislation, which Greene called 'disgusting, immoral, and evil.' Pain as I thought of every individual who might be wounded by her words-- individuals whose rights hang in the balance because of the regressive policy choices lawmakers like her seek to enact. Greene’s hateful behavior put a fire in me and reminded me why I ran for Congress in the first place-- to fight for everyone’s rights in the halls of power. I will never back down... Yesterday, bullies like Marjorie Taylor Greene lost. Joy won. WE won. Our work is just beginning. But on behalf of Evie-- and the millions of LGBTQ+ Americans like her-- I won’t back down until we’ve achieved equality and fairness for all."
On CNN this morning, Marie noted that now Greene "has to see our community every day. I'm immensely proud of my daughter, and that's all anyone is asking for, is to be treated as anyone else and that's what I want Rep. Greene to see."
McKayla Wilkes is a progressive candidate running for the Maryland seat Steny Hoyer-- who didn't bother voting against Greene's proposal to adjourn yesterday-- sits in. McKayla, a member of the LGBTQ community, told us she backs Marie's stand. "I applaud Congresswoman Marie Newman for vocally and unapologetically supporting our trans community, standing up to Majorie Taylor Greene's bigotry, and pushing for the Equality Act. Trans rights are human rights. The Equality Act would be an important step forward in the fight for full LGBTQ equality. People like Marjorie Taylor Greene, who insist on promoting homophobic and transphobic ideas and refuse to recognize the dignity of everyone, will be left in the waste-bin of history. It is so important for us to come together and be steadfast in our support for the LGBTQ community-- while major strides have been made in recent years, we still have a long way to go."
Also running for the Maryland seat occupied by Hoyer, Greenbelt Mayor Colin Byrd is on the same page with McKayla here. "Before we even get to this latest incident," he told me this morning, "let’s be mindful that Ms. Greene should not even still be in Congress. For well over a month, I have advocated for the expulsion of Marjorie Taylor Greene from the U.S. House of Representatives. The fact that she is now trolling one of her colleagues with transphobic gestures is brought to you in part by Members of Congress on both sides of the aisle, including Congressman Hoyer, who are unwilling to support expelling her-- who are unwilling to hold folks like Ms. Greene (and others) accountable for trying to overturn the 2020 election outcome and for helping to incite an insurrection that was effectively a white supremacist attempted coup. That’s before you even get to considering her other extraordinary infractions. By not supporting Congresswoman Bush’s resolution to expel these members of Congress, House leaders like Steny Hoyer and Nancy Pelosi and Senate leaders like Chuck Schumer are complicit in allowing the likes of Greene to continue to pollute the halls of Congress as well as the House floor. Granted, they removed her from committees, but that is not enough. She still can vote on the House floor, and she still disgraces the House in other ways. That is the reality, but it does not have to be that way."
Ally Dalsimer is another progressive 2022 congressional candidate, running in a northern Virginia district just south of where Colin and McKayla are running. She's as clear as a bell about her support for Marie's stand as well: "There is no room in Congress for people unwilling to represent ALL the people within their districts, and that necessarily includes members of the LGBTQIA community. If Representative Greene can’t represent all the people of her district, then she has no business being in Congress. Under Trump, we had four years of hate-filled rhetoric and violence against black and brown peoples, gender nonconforming people, women, and everyone else who did not fit the stereotype of the misogynistic white male. The fact that the average lifespan for a black trans woman is just 35 years says it all, there is no room in our society for people who treat other people as less than human. By denying the reality of the non-cys community, that is exactly what representative Greene is doing. I say kudos to representative Newman and all those who not only say the right things, but actually put actions behind words."
New Mexico state Senator Antoinette Sedillo Lopez, a candidate for the soon-to-be-open Deb Haaland congressional seat in Albuquerque, told me see sees Greene as a disgrace and that she "seems to be filled with hate. Stripping her of her committee memberships did not seem to cause her to reflect on her hateful and traitorous behavior. Transgender and all LGBTQI are part of the fabric of our country and are entitled to protection from the discimination perpeturated by people like Representative Greene. Her words and actions illustrate the need for the Equality Act. I hope that her constituents see that her radical and hate-based representation has no place in our country and reject her. She is a danger to our democracy."
Shervin Aazami, the progressive running for Congress in the San Fernando Valley seat occupied by corporate Dem Brad Sherman, told me that he feels "Guaranteeing equal protection under the law for the LGBTQ+ community is decades overdue. An estimated 40% of houseless youth are LGBTQ+, with trans and non-binary youth of color disproportionately impacted by violence, discrimination, poverty, and isolation. It is essential that our federal civil rights laws explicitly bar discrimination based on gender identity and sexual orientation. The Equality Act would accomplish this by extending anti-discrimination protections for LGBTQ+ community members across essential areas including housing, employment, credit, education, and public spaces. Last year's landmark Supreme Court ruling under Bostock v. Clayton County brought us an important step forward by prohibiting discrimination in the workplace. It is past time for Congress to codify these protections under federal law and make them permanent. Let's get it done."
Ted Lieu (D-CA) is co-chair off the Democratic Policy and Communications Committee and I was very interested in knowing how Democratic leadership was looking at this. This morning he told me that "We live in serious times and they demand serious leadership. Marjorie is not a serious person. She has a long record of espousing crackpot conspiracy theories. Her views on any subject should be given the same consideration and respect due to anyone who believes that a secret cabal of government officials run an international child sex trafficing ring and drink the blood of children. Sadly, she is starting to become the standard bearer for the Republican Party."
I asked my own congressman, Adam Schiff, about the dust-up between Greene and the LGBTQ community, and his response was pitch-perfect, something Kevin McCarthy, whose district is just a few miles away from ours, should try really hard to understand. "By refusing to hold Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene accountable for her actions and words," wrote Schiff, "Republican leaders have given license to even more extreme and unhinged actions by this fringe Member-- this time targeting the trans community and one of my colleagues’ daughter. Greene could never hope to possess even a fraction of the courage and grace it takes for trans people, like Rep. Marie Newman’s daughter, to live as their authentic selves. It’s time to stand up to this repugnant bigotry. One step we can take in Congress is to pass the Equality Act and ensure all LGBTQ Americans are afforded the full extent of their constitutionally enshrined civil liberties."