By now, most of us have heard what the Speaker of the House said about her Republican colleagues, stating the need for extra capitol security because “the enemy is within the House of Representatives.” She claims that there are those “…who have threatened violence against other members of Congress,” but I have not heard mention of the names of the perpetrators of such threats. Perhaps, she speaks of Marjory Taylor Greene and Lauren Boebert. Perhaps there are others. Such a bold declaration made against members of the opposition party do not bold well for President Biden’s unity mission, nor does it speak well of the speaker’s desire for bipartisan cooperation. There can be compromise with opposition; there can be no compromise with enemies.
There is no doubt that there are members of both parties who probably should not continue to represent the American people, but the problem is that those representatives were voted in by the people of their districts. Who among us has a right to overturn the legitimate election of any man or woman, regardless of what he or she has said, or in some instances, done, in the past? Democrat Congressman Alcee Hastings was impeached as a U.S. district judge by a vote of 413-3 in the Democrat-controlled House in 1988. The charges of bribery, perjury, falsifying documents, and obstructing justice among many others were sent to the Senate in 17 articles of impeachment. He was found guilty on eight articles and removed from office in 1989. He now sits in the House and voted twice to impeach President Trump. Is he an “enemy within?” Former Senate Majority Leader Robert Byrd of West Virginia, the President Pro Tempore of the Senate who removed Hastings from office, was a past member of the Ku Klux Klan. Was he an “enemy within?” Should he have been removed from office? Representative Adam Schiff knowingly propagated a lie that he had evidence of illegal collusion between President Trump and the Russians, leading to an effort to remove a duly elected president. Is he an enemy within? Representative Eric Swalwell, who sits on the House Intelligence Committee, had compromising relations with a Chinese spy? Is he an enemy within? I guess only Republicans can be enemies within.
If it is Representative MarjorieTaylor Greene that has the speaker’s ire, it would be with good reason. There is no defending some of the things Green has said in the past, from her perpetuating conspiracy theories to inciting hatred, but she was elected by the voters of Georgia’s 14th congressional district. Her social media feed might be a smorgasbord of vile posts, she may support QAnon, and might be Islamophobic… all abhorrent, and not in any way representative of the platform of the Republican party. But again, the voters elected her to office. Unless she has committed a crime in her position as a congresswoman, or poses an imminent threat, who should have the power to expel her from the House? It is the responsibility of the people to determine who represents them in Congress, and it is the voters of the 14th district that must make that determination regarding Marjorie Taylor Greene’s fitness for office in 2022. I do not support the positions Marjorie Taylor Greene has taken in the past, and many of her words and actions today, but I do support the U.S. Constitution. I also support having a Congress that works for the American people, and that cannot happen when the supposed leader of the chamber, for all intents and purposes, has declared the opposition the enemy.
The problem in the U.S. Congress is not Marjorie Taylor Greene (although she doesn’t help), or any other member with whom the majority disagrees. She can be removed from office, and the threat to the United States Constitution will remain. The threat comes from the top, from the leadership of the House and Senate, from individuals who prioritize political power and liberal socialist ideology over constitutional duty. The threat comes from a speaker of the house who holds Covid-19 relief hostage to hurt the president of another party and treats members of the minority as enemies, and from a Senate Majority leader who threatens to pack the Supreme Court and add new states to the union in attempts to destroy the minority party. Speaker Pelosi, you may be correct… There may be enemies within the U.S. Congress. If so, they are the ones holding the gavels.