Marjorie Taylor Greene denies calling for Pelosi's execution during trial, then backtracks

"I haven't said that," Greene said under sworn testimony. "Oh, no. Wait. Hold on now…"

By Jon Skolnik

Staff Writer

Published April 22, 2022 4:26PM (EDT)

Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, (R-GA) (Kent Nishimura / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)
Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, (R-GA) (Kent Nishimura / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)

Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Ga., on Friday appeared to walk back her denial of calling House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., "a traitor to the country" in a trial around her eligibility for re-election, admitting that she previously said Pelosi "violated her oath of office."

Greene's seeming about-face came under oath this week when questioned about her rhetoric and actions leading up to the Capitol riot. The trial stems from a recent lawsuit brought by a group of Georgia voters who argued that the Georgia freshman does not qualify for re-election over her apparent violation of the 14th Amendment, which bars anyone who supported an insurrection from running for Congress. 

During the hearing, lawyer Ron Fein, who is representing the plaintiffs, asked Grenee if she called Pelosi a "traitor" in her many disagreements with the House Speaker.

RELATED: Federal judge greenlights challenge to disqualify Marjorie Taylor Greene from re-election

"In fact, you think that Speaker Pelosi is a traitor to the country, right?" Fain inquired. 

"I'm not answering that question," Greene responded. "I haven't said that."

"Put up plaintiff's exhibit 5," Fain pressed on.

"Oh, no," Greene interjected. Wait. Hold on now…"

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The exchange appears to be referencing a 2019 video Greene released on Facebook while campaigning for Congress. In the video, reported by CNN, the Georgia Republican claimed that Pelosi was "guilty of treason" over the House Speaker's apparently lenient border policies.

"She took an oath to protect American citizens and uphold our laws. And she gives aid and comfort to our enemies who illegally invade our land. That's what treason is," Greene said in the video. "And by our law representatives and senators can be kicked out and no longer serve in our government. And it's, uh, it's a crime punishable by death is what treason is. Nancy Pelosi is guilty of treason."

Throughout the trial, Greene repeatedly claimed that she did recall a number of statements that she made surrounding the integrity of the 2020 election. She also alleged that she has had "many people" manage her social media accounts over the years, implying that she should be off the hook for some of her online activity. 

Leading up to the trial, Greene aggressively sought to block the proceeding. But on Monday, a federal judge ruled that the proceeding could move forward, requiring the Georgia conservative to provide sworn testimony. If the judge rules in favor of the plaintiffs, Greene will be made ineligible for public office forever.

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By Jon Skolnik

Jon Skolnik was a former staff writer at Salon.

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