Greene’s Holocaust comparisons draw rebuke from GOP leaders

U.S. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Ga. (Drew Angerer/Getty Images/TNS)

Credit: TNS

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U.S. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Ga. (Drew Angerer/Getty Images/TNS)

Credit: TNS

WASHINGTON — U.S. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene’s comments comparing current coronavirus policies to the oppression of Jewish people during the Holocaust drew a sharp rebuke from the House’s top Republican.

Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy issued a statement today on behalf of the entire GOP conference condemning Greene’s remarks.

“Marjorie is wrong, and her intentional decision to compare the horrors of the Holocaust with wearing masks is appalling,” he wrote. “The Holocaust is the greatest atrocity committed in history. The fact that this needs to be stated today is deeply troubling.”

McCarthy has not said whether he will take any disciplinary action against Greene, a Republican from Rome. Democrats earlier this year stripped her of committee assignments for statements she made prior to running for office, but McCarthy and other Republicans disagreed and resisted attempts to censure Greene or expel her from Congress.

Asked to respond to McCarthy, Greene’s office released a statement that blames Democrats and the media for any criticism she faces. She falsely says that mask mandates and “forced vaccinations” are being used to discriminate against those who refuse to comply.

U.S. Rep. Nikema Williams, D-Atlanta, is the sponsor of the censure resolution, which was filed but has not received a vote. In a reply to McCarthy, Williams encouraged him to do more than criticize Greene and back the resolution.

“Unless of course his statement is just a bunch of empty words and he doesn’t really mean it,” Williams wrote on Twitter.

Greene has made controversial comments about the Holocaust in the past. Most recently, she has drawn parallels between the treatment of Jewish people then and coronavirus recovery measures under President Joe Biden.

During an interview Friday on a conservative Christian podcast, she criticized House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s requirement that all Republican members prove they have been vaccinated before she agrees to lift a mask mandate on the House floor.

“You know, we can look back at a time in history where people were told to wear a gold star, and they were definitely treated like second-class citizens, so much so that they were put in trains and taken to gas chambers in Nazi Germany,” Greene told Water Cooler podcast host David Brody, according to CNN. “And this is exactly the type of abuse that Nancy Pelosi is talking about.”

Tuesday morning, Greene wrote on Twitter that businesses requiring employees to show proof of being vaccinated was no different than when Nazi’s forced Jewish people to wear gold stars. Shortly after she wrote that, the criticism from fellow Republicans began to pile up.

U.S. Rep. Steve Scalise, the GOP whip, and U.S. Rep. Elise Stefanik, the newly installed conference chair, also released statements distancing themselves from Greene.

Greene has previously said she did not plan to be vaccinated against COVID-19 because she believes her immune system is strong enough to fight the disease. Last week, she repeatedly participated in votes on the House floor without wearing a mask.

Dov Wilker, director of the American Jewish Committee’s regional office in Atlanta, said Greene’s comments dishonor the memories of those who died during the Nazi-led genocide.

“Masks and vaccinations are about supporting and keeping people safe — the greater good,” Wilker said. “Whereas the Holocaust was about the intentional destruction and murder of 6 million Jews and anyone who was not a part of the Aryan race.”