Marjorie Taylor Greene apologizes for comparing mask mandate to the Holocaust

Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene speaks at a microphone
Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) speaks at a news conference in Washington in May.
(Jacquelyn Martin / Associated Press)

Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene apologized Monday for affronting people with recent comments comparing the required wearing of masks in the House to the horrors of the Holocaust.

“I’m truly sorry for offending people with remarks about the Holocaust,” the Georgia Republican told reporters outside the Capitol, saying she had visited Washington’s U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum earlier in the day. “There’s no comparison and there never ever will be.”

Greene’s comments were a rare expression of regret by the conservative agitator, a freshman whose career has included the embrace of violent and offensive conspiracy theories and angry confrontations with progressive colleagues.


Her apology came more than three weeks after appearing on a conservative podcast and comparing COVID-19 safety requirements adopted by Democrats, who control the House, to “a time and history where people were told to wear a gold star.” She said they were “put in trains and taken to gas chambers in Nazi Germany. This is exactly the type of abuse that [Speaker] Nancy Pelosi is talking about.”

Greene’s comments were condemned by Republican leaders, including House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Bakersfield), who called the comparison “appalling.”

GOP leaders have often been reluctant to castigate Greene, a close ally of former President Trump. After social media posts were unearthed in which Greene suggested support for executing some Democratic leaders, McCarthy and most Republicans stood by her when the House took the unusual step of stripping her of her committee assignments in February.

Marjorie Taylor Greene’s ignorance of the reality of the Holocaust shines through her comment about mask rules.

May 24, 2021

But as House members returned to the Capitol on Monday after a three-week break, Greene appeared contrite.

“Antisemitism is true hate,” she said. “And I saw that today at the Holocaust Museum.”

In 2018, two years before her election to Congress, she speculated on Facebook that California wildfires may have been caused by “lasers or blue beams of light” controlled by a left-wing cabal tied to a powerful Jewish family.

On Monday, she told reporters that when she was 19, she visited the site of the Auschwitz concentration camp that the Nazis built in occupied Poland during World War II.


David Dushman, the last surviving Soviet soldier involved in the liberation of the Nazi death camp at Auschwitz, has died.

June 6, 2021

“It isn’t like I learned about it today,” she said of the Holocaust, in which 6 million Jews and huge numbers of other people were killed. “I went today because I thought it was important,” she said, and wanted to talk about it as she apologized.

House leaders have recently said vaccinated people no longer must wear masks in the chamber.

Rep. Brad Schneider (D-Ill.) said he would introduce a resolution in the House this week to censure Greene.

For their part, Republicans may try to force a vote to punish Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.), who recently made remarks criticized by top House Democrats and Jewish lawmakers for seeming to compare the U.S. and Israel to the Islamic militant organizations Hamas and the Taliban. Omar said she didn’t mean to draw that parallel.