Judge: Georgia voters can challenge Greene’s re-election race

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FILE – Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Ga., speaks as President Joe Biden delivers his first State of the Union address during a joint session of Congress, on Capitol Hill in Washington on March 1 2022. A federal judge on Monday, April 18, ruled that a group of Georgia voters can pursue legal moves to disqualify U.S. Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene from running for re-election to Congress, citing her role in the deadly attack on the US Capitol. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, pool, file)

PA

A federal judge ruled on Monday that a group of Georgia voters can pursue legal moves to disqualify U.S. Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene from running for re-election to Congress, citing her role in the deadly attack on the U.S. Capitol.

The challenge filed last month with the Georgia Secretary of State’s office alleges that Greene, a Republican, helped facilitate the January 6, 2021 riot that prevented Congress from certifying Joe Biden’s victory in the election presidential. This violates a rarely cited provision of the 14th Amendment and makes her ineligible to run for re-election, according to the challenge.

The amendment states that no one may serve in Congress “who, after being sworn in, as a member of Congress.” . . to support the Constitution of the United States, will have engaged in an insurrection or a rebellion against it. Ratified shortly after the Civil War, it was partly intended to prevent representatives who had fought for the Confederacy from returning to Congress.

Greene, 47, filed a lawsuit earlier this month asking a judge to rule that the law voters are using to challenge his eligibility is itself unconstitutional and to bar state officials from to apply.

Judge Amy Totenberg, in a 73-page decision, denied Greene’s request for a preliminary injunction and temporary restraining order.

Totenberg, who was appointed to the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia by President Barack Obama, wrote that Greene failed to meet the “burden of persuasion” in his injunction request.

Georgia law states that any voter eligible to vote for a candidate may challenge that candidate’s qualifications by filing a written complaint within two weeks of the qualification deadline. The Secretary of State must then notify the challenge to the candidate and request a hearing before an administrative law judge. After holding a hearing, the administrative law judge presents his findings to the Secretary of State, who must then determine whether the candidate is qualified.

Free Speech for People, a national campaign and election finance reform group, filed the challenge on March 24 on behalf of the group of voters.

Greene said in her lawsuit that she “vigorously denies having ‘aiding and participating in an insurrection to obstruct the peaceful transfer of presidential power’.”