Critics hoping to stop Georgia Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene from voting for her role in inciting the violent assault on the U.S. Capitol are asking a judge to review a recently released text message she wrote on the former President Donald Trump saying the ‘Marshall’ Act would remain in office.
Backed by the group Free Speech for People, four residents of the first-term Republican district are asking an administrative law judge to declare her ineligible for re-election because the 14th Amendment bars insurgents from holding office.
“In our private conversation with only members, several say that the only way to save our Republic is for Trump to call Marshall [sic] law,” Greene wrote in the Jan. 17, 2021 message to White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows, apparently misspelling the term “martial law.”
“I don’t know about these things. I just wanted you to tell her,” her text message continued. “They stole this election. We all know. They will destroy our country next. Please tell him to declassify as much as possible so we can prosecute Biden and anyone else!
The text was among 2,300 messages Meadows gave to the House committee investigating the Capitol riot, which were later released to CNN on Monday. They detail the various ways Meadows was helping Trump reverse his election loss to Democrat Joe Biden.
Greene testified for three hours last week at a hearing in Atlanta where she repeated Trump’s lies about the theft of the 2020 election through massive voter fraud. She denied advocating violence, despite video evidence to the contrary on social media, and said she did not “remember” pushing for martial law.
In a court filing on Wednesday, attorneys wrote that the new text message undermined Greene’s credibility.
“Greene’s testimony in court that she did not recall discussing martial law with anyone was already dubious. This text with President Trump’s chief of staff makes his testimony all the more incredible because it appears to be the kind of message with the kind of recipient that a reasonable person testifying honestly would remember,” the attorneys wrote.
“Eleven days after the failed insurrection, Greene was still fighting against the peaceful transfer of power by advocating extra-legal means. This text, like her January 5 statements, shows how far she was willing to go to help Mr. Trump stay in power,” they added.
Greene’s attorney, James Bopp, said the new text proves nothing and actually shows Greene was moving away from the idea of martial law. “It’s not related to the case at all. It’s completely harmless,” he said.
The Georgia Republican is among a handful of congressmen that Free Speech for People is trying to have ballots removed, a strategy the group intends to deploy against Trump, should he run in 2024 for recover his old office.
A section of the 14th Amendment states that no one who has previously sworn to uphold the Constitution but then takes part in an insurrection may later hold office.
The judge in charge of the case, Charles Beaudrot, is expected to rule next week. Georgia’s primary election, in which Greene faces opposition, will be held on May 24.
Despite losing the election by 7 million votes nationally and 306-232 in the Electoral College, Trump became the first president in more than two centuries of elections to refuse to hand over power peacefully. His instigation of the Jan. 6 assault on the Capitol — his latest attempt to stay in power — left five people dead, including one police officer, injured 140 other officers, and preceded four police suicides.
Nonetheless, Trump remains the dominant figure in the Republican Party and is openly talking about running for president again in 2024.