Progressive critics are denouncing House Republicans over the caucus' failure to discipline freshman Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene during a closed-door meeting Wednesday night in which the QAnon-backing lawmaker—who has spewed bigoted conspiracy theories, openly harassed gun massacre survivors, and promoted violence against lawmakers—was allowed to keep her committee assignments. In response to the reported standing ovation the Georgia Republican received and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy's refusal to take action against Greene, Democrats have proclaimed the GOP is now officially the party of QAnon ahead of a scheduled House floor vote Thursday afternoon on a resolution to remove the congresswoman from her seat on the Education and Labor Committee and other assignments.
Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.)—who earlier on Wednesday denounced House Republicans' effort to strip her of committee assignments as part of a chauvinistic smear campaign aimed at diverting attention from Greene—tweeted in response to reports of the standing ovation: "The Q party is born!"
"The brand of the Republican Party in recent decades has been a mixture of the Big Lie and outrage," historian Juan Cole wrote in a column published Thursday. "Now, the party cannot summon any outrage for the Big Lie. Republican Senators will not impeach Donald Trump for inciting a mob that included armed white terrorists to kill them."
The Republican members of the House refused on Wednesday evening to take Marjorie Taylor Greene off the Education Committee even though she had until recently branded major school shootings as false flag attacks staged by gun control advocates. (Yes.) She also actively harassed Parkland survivor David Hogg. She also believes that Trump is a divine agent appointed to break up a high Democratic Party pedophile ring that drinks children's blood, and that a Jewish-funded space laser set the California wildfires.
David Corn at Mother Jones broke the story on Wednesday that Greene moderated a whole Facebook group characterized by racist slurs and death threats. She is still listed as a moderator, at a site where posters speak of taking a hammer to the heads of Democrats and going Punisher on them.
House minority member Kevin McCarthy has perfected the art of hunting with the hounds and running with the hares. He denounced Greene's beliefs and those of the QAnon cult to which she belongs, but refused to take any action against her. This, despite the precedent of having stripped Steve King (R-Iowa) (the R stands for Racist) of his committee assignments after he defended the terms "white nationalism" and "white supremacy." King was a model citizen compared to Greene.
"McCarthy is hoping against hope," Cole added, "that he can talk the talk without having actually to walk the walk."
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) on Wednesday castigated McCarthy for his "cowardly refusal to deal with Greene," emphasizing that Greene's peddling of vile conspiracy theories and promotion of racism and political violence warrants disciplinary action rather than a mere rebuke.
"After several conversations and literally running away from reporters, Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (Q-CA) made clear that he is refusing to take action against conspiracy theorist Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene," Pelosi said in a statement.
"As a result," said Pelosi, "the House will continue with a vote to strip Greene of her seat on the esteemed House Committee on Education & Labor and House Committee on Budget. McCarthy's failure to lead his party effectively hands the keys over to Greene—an anti-Semite, QAnon adherent, and 9/11 Truther."
Along similar lines, Cole argued that "the real problem here is what the Republican Party has become. There are still normal people in the party, but even they are mostly congenial to the white supremacists, the Nazis, and the tin foil hat conspiracy theorists."
"The Republican Party," Cole noted, "backed Greene's run for Congress. Party bigwigs campaigned for her. The party faithful apparently would be happy to make Greene president in the future. They are now the RepubliQan Party."
Washington Post columnist Monica Hesse wrote on Thursday that "the issue isn't that Greene seems to believe crazy stuff. The issue is that she's arrived in government at a time when believing crazy stuff can increase a lawmaker's power."
"The people who support Greene genuinely believe that she is being disenfranchised," Hesse continued. "In the universe she shares with her supporters, being loathed in Washington is not an indication that she has behaved shamefully; it is an indication that she is right when she says everyone else is against her."
"The more she does outlandish things, the more she will be criticized, and the more she will use the criticism as evidence of her silencing, and the more money she will raise, the more she will win," Hesse added. "It's a cyclical, cynical game. She didn't invent it, but she's testing its limits."