What’s the explanation for Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA)’s behavior in recent months, in which she declined to join a revolt against the House Speakership candidate Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), and has disavowed some of her past conspiratorial views?
According to one report months back in January, her motivation is that she really wants to be on the presidential ticket in 2024 with former President Donald Trump.
“This is no shrinking violet, she’s ambitious — she’s not shy about that, nor should she be,” Steve Bannon, Trump’s former adviser, said, per NBC News. “She sees herself on the short list for Trump’s VP. Paraphrasing Cokie Roberts, when MTG looks in the mirror she sees a potential president smiling back… She’s both strategic and disciplined — she made a power move, knowing it would run up hard against her most ardent crew,” Bannon added. ”She was prepared to take the intense heat/hatred short-term for the long-term goal of being a player.”
A source also close with Greene stated that her “whole vision is to be vice president.” That adviser also believes that Trump should consider Greene on his “short list.”
A spokesperson for the Congresswoman said at the time that Greene is “laser-focused on serving the people of Northwest Georgia on her new committees in the GOP majority,” and “Her work on Oversight, Homeland Security, and the COVID Select committee is her priority and people shouldn’t get wrapped up into rumors.”
Marjorie Taylor Greene and Trump?
With Trump running again, he will be looking for a new running mate, following his falling-out with Mike Pence after he did not go along with his plans to overrule some electoral votes, and leading the Trump-associated Capitol riots to call for Pence’s hanging.
Putting Greene on the ticket would certainly put a spotlight on the long list of controversial views she has expressed over the years, from support for QAnon to 9/11 trutherism to appearing at white nationalist rallies to talk of “space lasers.”
Trump himself, of course, has said lots of shocking things over the years, although if he runs there will likely be more of a focus on the things he did as president.
The New York Times earlier in January wrote about the detente between Greene and McCarthy, noting that McCarthy has determined that he will try to stay close to members of Congress who are close to the far-right base, when other recent Republican House Speakers have not done so.
The report also revealed that McCarthy had intervened and had asked his general counsel to get on the phone with Twitter executives after Greene was kicked off of that platform.
“If you’re going to be in a fight, you want Marjorie in your foxhole,” the House Speaker told the Times in an interview. “When she picks a fight, she’s going to fight until the fight’s over. She reminds me of my friends from high school, that we’re going to stick together all the way through.”
“If he sticks to it [his agenda], will easily vindicate me and prove I moved the conference to the right during my first two years when I served in the minority with no committees,” Greene said of McCarthy.
Greene used to liken her meetings with McCarthy, when he was House Minority Leader, to trips to the principal’s office. But more recently, the two have become something closer to allies, with Greene hearing at a party that McCarthy had defended her when Democratic House leaders were talking about removing her from committees.
The implication was that Greene agreed to support McCarthy for Speaker after he assured her she would get committee assignments back.
“After Republicans underperformed expectations in the midterm elections, winning only a narrow majority and guaranteeing that Mr. McCarthy would have a tough fight to become speaker, Ms. Greene was quick to begin barnstorming the right-wing media circuit as one of his top surrogates, using her conservative credentials to vouch for his,” the Times said.
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Stephen Silver is a Senior Editor for 19FortyFive. He is an award-winning journalist, essayist and film critic, who is also a contributor to the Philadelphia Inquirer, the Jewish Telegraphic Agency, Broad Street Review and Splice Today. The co-founder of the Philadelphia Film Critics Circle, Stephen lives in suburban Philadelphia with his wife and two sons. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenSilver.