Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) is an outspoken populist that is widely despised by Democrats and even many establishment Republicans, and there has been a concerted effort by her opponents to sideline her from Congress and silence her political speech going forward.
A group of voters in Georgia have even sought to disqualify her from running for re-election, and a federal judge just denied an attempt by Greene to block that effort to remove her from the ballot, Conservative Brief reported.
At issue here is Greene’s alleged role in the January 6 Capitol riot, which was deemed an “insurrection” by Democrats and the media, and a section of the Constitution’s 14th Amendment that bars previous office-holders from holding office again if they participated in an insurrection or rebellion.
“Insurrection” and eligibility for office
According to CBS News, a group of five voters in Rep. Greene’s district filed a complaint with the state of Georgia which argued that Greene was ineligible to run for office again by way of her purported participation in the January 6, 2021, “insurrection” at the U.S. Capitol.
The complaint cites Section 3 of the 14th Amendment, passed in the aftermath of the Civil War to punish former Confederate officers and officials, which states, in relevant part, that: “No person shall be a Senator or Representative in Congress … who, having previously taken an oath, as a member of Congress … shall have engaged in insurrection or rebellion against the same, or given aid or comfort to the enemies thereof.”
Greene sought the intervention of a federal district court in that state matter and argued that the complaint violated her own rights under the 1st and 14th Amendments, as well as that an amnesty statute passed in 1872 nullified Section 3 and rendered void the challenge to her eligibility for office.
Judge says Greene failed to make her case
Unfortunately for Rep. Greene, U.S. District Judge Amy Totenberg was unpersuaded by the congresswoman’s arguments and denied her motion for a temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction against the state review of her eligibility sparked by the complaint.
In her 73-page decision, Judge Totenberg reviewed the various state and federal statutes and judicial procedures at play and ultimately determined that, due to the novelty of the arguments and limited examples of prior judicial precedence on the matter, Greene had failed to prove a likelihood that she would succeed on the merits of her arguments.
“This case involves a whirlpool of colliding constitutional interests of public import,” the judge concluded. “The novelty of the factual and historical posture of this case — especially when assessed in the context of a preliminary injunction motion reviewed on a fast track — has made resolution of the complex legal issues at stake here particularly demanding.”
“The Court has particularly focused on whether Plaintiff has carried her burden of persuasion to establish a strong likelihood of prevailing on the merits of her legal claims,” she added. “Upon a thorough analysis of each of the claims asserted in this case, the Court concludes that Plaintiff has not carried her burden of persuasion with respect to this important and essential prerequisite to Plaintiff’s demonstration of an entitlement to injunctive relief.”
Similar challenge against North Carolina Rep. Cawthorn blocked
As such, Judge Totenberg denied Greene’s motions to restrain the state review from going forward, meaning that administrative procedure can now move forward through Georgia’s judicial system.
Interestingly, CBS noted that the same national organization backing the group of Georgia voters, Free Speech for People, had launched a similar effort in North Carolina to disqualify Rep. Madison Cawthorn (R-NC). However, a federal judge in that state had accepted the arguments from Cawthorn and blocked the state process on the challenge to that congressman’s eligibility for office under the 14th Amendment.