Newly elected House lawmakers arrived on Capitol Hill this week for freshman orientation. And one with a reputation for spreading conspiracy theories objected to being made to wear a mask inside the Capitol.
“Our first session of New Member Orientation covered COVID in Congress. Masks, masks, masks,” Marjorie Taylor Greene, a Republican congresswoman-elect from Georgia, tweeted early Friday afternoon. “I proudly told my freshman class that masks are oppressive.”
“In GA, we work out, shop, go to restaurants, go to work, and school without masks,” Greene continued. “My body, my choice.”
She concluded her tweet with the hashtag “#FreeYourFace.”
Greene was photographed arriving on Capitol Hill with her mask, which was emblazoned with the American flag, hanging off her ear. She was seen leaving orientation with it on.
Fellow freshman Madison Cawthorn told reporters that Greene had a “pretty fiery” exchange over the mask rule with officials doing the briefing.
Greene, a supporter of the far-right QAnon conspiracy theory, was elected last week to represent Georgia’s 14th Congressional District after winning a runoff election for the Republican nomination in August. (After her win in the primary, President Trump congratulated Greene, calling her “a future Republican star.”)
She has been among the most aggressive elected officials to back Trump’s baseless claims of voter “fraud,” accusing “the Democrats, Big Tech and the Fake News Media” of trying to steal the election.
Several of her posts about the election have been blocked by Twitter for containing misleading content, which in turn have only fueled her own claims of “censorship” by social media platforms, which she’s been making since the spring, when Facebook removed a campaign ad that showed her wielding a rifle and warning “antifa terrorists” to “stay the hell out of northwest Georgia.”
Her objection to mask wearing comes amid the country’s raging coronavirus pandemic. More than 152,000 new COVID-19 cases were reported in the U.S. Thursday, according to Johns Hopkins University, a new daily record.
There have been more than 10.5 million confirmed coronavirus cases in the U.S. More than 242,000 Americans have died.
Georgia is among dozens of states to see an uptick in coronavirus cases and deaths. And it ranks sixth among the states with the most COVID cases.
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