WASHINGTON — U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi had tough words for Republican leaders, saying they should be held responsible for not standing up to Georgia U.S. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene.

In recent days, news reports have highlighted video of Greene confronting a teenage survivor of the Parkland, Florida, school shootings several years ago. Greene also spread conspiracy theories about the mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School, and she liked posts on social media that advocated executing congressional leaders such as Pelosi.

While advocacy groups and Democrats have said Greene, who lives in Rome, should resign or be expelled from Congress for this behavior and more, her Republican colleagues have mostly remained quiet. House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, the top Republican in the chamber, recently said he was concerned by Greene’s comments and wanted to have a talk with her, but little more.

Pelosi, asked during her weekly news conference whether she was concerned about Greene’s rhetoric, said she was more bothered by Republicans “willing to overlook, ignore those statements.”

She pointed out that Greene had been appointed to serve on the House Education and Labor Committee. That committee in 2019 signed off on a measure that dealt with improving school safety and preparedness as a direct response to the Parkland shooting.

“Assigning her to the Education Committee when she has mocked the killing of little children at Sandy Hook Elementary School, when she has mocked the killing of teenagers at the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School — what could they be thinking?” Pelosi said. “Or is thinking too generous a word for what they might be doing?”


Even before she was elected to Congress, Greene faced criticism for making statements or posts on social media that were racist, xenophobic or anti-Semitic. She also has supported the baseless QAnon conspiracy theory and spread misinformation or falsehoods about 9/11 and the mass shooting in Las Vegas.

She later distanced herself from some of those posts, but she rarely apologizes.

Republican members of Georgia’s congressional delegation were critical of Greene last summer when troublesome posts were surfaced in media reports. They supported her opponent, Dr. John Cowan, in the 14th Congressional District runoff.

Those same lawmakers tamped down after Greene won that contest and it became clear she would be joining their ranks in Washington. Many of them said they wanted to give Greene time to prove herself and would reserve judgment.

On the night she won her runoff election, Greene referred to Pelosi as a “bitch.” More recently, she has spread misinformation about the general election and backed Donald’s Trump’s efforts to reverse his loss to Joe Biden in November’s presidential election.

U.S. Rep. Bobby Scott, the Virginia lawmaker who chairs the Education and Labor Committee, also condemned Republicans for adding Greene to the panel.

“House Republicans made this appointment, and Republican House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy must explain how someone with this background represents the Republican Party on education issues,” Scott’s statement said. “He is sending a clear message to students, parents, and educators about the views of the Republican Party.”

Story Filed By Cox Newspapers

For Use By Clients of the New York Times News Service