U.S. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia drew national ire last month after reporters learned that she'd liked and commented on Facebook posts denying the reality of school shootings. But one parent of a Parkland shooting victim has come to her defense.
Andrew Pollack, whose daughter Meadow died in the massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in 2018, tweeted in support of the recently elected Republican after House Democrats signaled they would introduce a resolution to expel Greene from the House.
"I stand with Marjorie!" he wrote on Twitter last week.
.@mtgreenee won her primary by nearly 20%, her runoff by nearly 20%, and her General by FIFTY %.— Andrew Pollack (@AndrewPollackFL) January 28, 2021
The Democrats are now introducing a resolution to expel her from congress because she’s an avid defender of President Trump.
I stand with Marjorie!
In the tweet, Pollack, an avowed conservative, claimed Democrats want to oust Greene because of her support for former president Donald Trump.
But the push to remove Greene came after the nonprofit newsroom Media Matters reported that the freshman House member had agreed with a Facebook comment in 2018 saying the school shooting at Stoneman Douglas was a "false flag." In another post, Greene suggested that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and former presidential candidate Hillary Clinton wanted more school shootings, in order to push a gun-control agenda. She also called Stoneman Douglas survivor and gun-reform advocate David Hogg "#littleHitler." (Facebook later removed the posts for violating its policies.)
Reached by New Times, Pollack declined to comment about his support of Greene.
"Fuck that. Your newspaper is a piece of shit. I'd prefer not to talk to you," Pollack said. (New Times previously profiled Pollack in a 2018 story by reporter Tarpley Hitt.)
In recent days, Greene has walked back some of her comments. She reportedly told one Parkland mother in a private conversation that she didn't believe the Stoneman Douglas shooting was fake, and in an interview yesterday with the far-right One America News Network, the congresswoman said school shootings "are not fake."
Pollack, a public supporter of Trump, took a different path from other members of the Parkland community who were affected by the 2018 shooting. While the students of March For Our Lives advocated for improved gun-safety laws, Pollack pushed to arm school personnel to combat active shooters.
Pollack came up with the idea for the Aaron Feis Guardian Program, named for the football coach who died while trying to protect students at Parkland, as a way to arm and train school employees through a virtual-reality simulation program. He has also supported efforts for strict security measures in public schools, including adding armed guards.
While Pollack has thrown in his lot with Greene, other Parkland parents are calling for her removal.
Yesterday, Parkland dad Fred Guttenberg, whose daughter Jaime died in the shooting, held a press conference with Democratic Reps. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, Jahana Hayes, and Ted Deutch to call for Greene's resignation or removal from her congressional committee assignments, including her seat on the House Committee on Education and Labor.
.@DWStweets, @RepTedDeutch @fred_guttenberg host a presser on @mtgreenee, who won't apologize for spreading false claims on the Parkland shooting. "She has engaged in sedition and baseless conspiracy theories," DWS says, introducing a resolution to kick her off committees.— Alex Daugherty (@alextdaugherty) February 1, 2021
Last week, Guttenberg shared a video of Greene harassing David Hogg in Washington, D.C., in 2018. Greene accused Hogg of being bankrolled by liberal philanthropist George Soros, an allegation Hogg denies.
On Twitter, Guttenberg has railed against Greene for her conspiracy theories about Parkland and other shootings.
"I feel anger and devastation. She is a depraved human being," he tells New Times. "I visit my 14-year-old daughter in a cemetery. We're coming up on three years, and she's gonna let that lie live?"
Guttenbeg believes the Republican Party bears some responsibility for not pushing back.
"It's intentional, not crazy, and the Republican Party is choosing not to do anything about it," he says.
Parkland survivors and brothers Adam and Josh Buchwald say Greene's comments were disrespectful and difficult to hear only weeks away from the third anniversary of the February 14 shooting.
"We saw it firsthand — you couldn't get any closer to the real thing. To call us crisis actors...it's upsetting," says Josh, who was in the freshman building, where the shooter opened fire. He says he went through therapy for several weeks afterward.
While the brothers did not see Pollack's tweet in support of Greene, they say he's entitled to his opinion. Still, they were in disbelief that a parent of someone from Parkland could support someone who has promoted conspiracy theories on school shootings.
"With this incident, for parents to support her, I think it's insane. Especially if their kids were there, I don't know how they could support her," Adam says.
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