The halls of Congress have been beset by partisan division long before the rise of Trumpism, but the former president and business mogul ushered in an extreme school of thought. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene attempted to engage Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez in a confrontational fashion, signaling a showdown that has little signs of slowing down.
The Washington Post reports that on Wednesday (May 12), Greene was aggressive towards Ocasio-Cortez and also accused her colleague of supporting terrorism among other charges. The moment prompted Ocasio-Cortez to address the matter with House leadership and put in security measures that would protect members from potentially violent encounters such as the one Greene tried to drum up.
As the Post noted, two reporters from the publication took notice of the New York congresswoman leaving the House chamber yesterday afternoon ahead of her Georgia counterpart, with Greene shouting Ocasio-Cortez’s first name in order to hold a conversation. Ocasio-Cortez continued walking and ignored Greene walking up behind her and shouting accusations towards the congresswoman.
“You don’t care about the American people. Why do you support terrorists and antifa?” Greene said. Ocasio-Cortez turned around to face Greene but it isn’t known if she responded verbally but she made a gesture that appeared to display annoyance according to the reporters who witnessed the exchange.
A statement was issued from the office of Congresswoman Ocasio-Cortez addressing the moment and raising concerns of security and safety in and outside the House chamber.
“Representative Greene tried to begin an argument with Congresswoman Ocasio-Cortez and when Rep. Ocasio-Cortez tried to walk away, Congresswoman Greene began screaming and called Rep. Ocasio-Cortez a terrorist sympathizer,” Ocasio-Cortez spokeswoman Lauren Hitt offered in a statement. “We hope leadership and the Sergeant at Arms will take real steps to make Congress a safe, civil place for all Members and staff — especially as many offices are discussing reopening. One Member has already been forced to relocate her office due to Congresswoman Greene’s attacks.”
Greene has been seen as a sympathizer of the Republican Party’s arm of extremism and has previously supported QAnon’s philosophy, which includes accusations of Black Lives Matter being framed as a terrorist organization. Greene has continued to corral Ocasio-Cortez into a debate, which has been refused time and again. Ocasio-Cortez has said that the attempted coup at the U.S. Capitol has triggered PTSD symptoms and Greene’s attempt to rile her up would definitely be seen as threatening.
On Twitter, news of the moment garnered some discussion with many critical of Greene’s actions, her extreme political views, and her attempts to create tension with her congressional colleague with claims that are largely baseless. We’ve got the reactions below.