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EDITORIAL: Elise Stefanik should have had the courage of her convictions on Greene

EDITORIAL: Elise Stefanik should have had the courage of her convictions on Greene

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Our congresswoman, Elise Stefanik, has condemned as “inexcusable” statements made by her fellow Republican congresswoman, Marjorie Taylor Greene. But she has refused to do anything about them, because, she says, Congress has no right to overturn the decision of the people of Georgia, who elected Greene.

We’re tempted to end this editorial right here, and let that paragraph, which takes irony to its peak, speak for itself.

A month ago, Stefanik was abetting an effort to overturn the decision of the people in several swing states, including Georgia, in the November election. She stood up in Congress during its certification of state electors and objected to the results in Pennsylvania. She wanted to object to results in other states, too, including Georgia, but her plans were stymied by the second thoughts of several Republican senators. They had decided that, perhaps, Jan. 6 was the wrong day to undermine democracy with false claims.

That day, a crowd marched from a Trump rally to the Capitol, where they fought with police officers, broke in and smashed up the place. Five people died.

A few Republicans were shaken and abashed by the riot. They withdrew their objections. Stefanik pushed ahead, however, making a speech that mixed false and true statements.

Lies almost always include some true elements — otherwise, they’re just fantasy, like saying the California wildfires were started by beams from solar generators in space as part of a conspiracy involving the Rothschild family, former California Gov. Jerry Brown and Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s husband.

The “space beams” story is one of the tales woven by Greene, a clever fabulist who pretends she is just raising questions while speculating, for example, on whether the mass shooting in Las Vegas was carried out by gun control advocates, not a lone shooter.

Isn’t it vicious and heartless to peddle such a lie in public, so it will reach the ears of family members who lost loved ones that night?

We don’t need to speculate: It is vicious. It is heartless.

All the Democrats in the House of Representatives and 11 Republicans (including three from New York — Chris Jacobs, John Katko and Nicole Malliotakis) were appalled enough by Greene’s statements they voted to strip her of her committee assignments.

But Stefanik said Congress had no right to act, because Georgia’s voters had spoken. Two more things about that:

  • The members of Congress, not voters, decide who sits on congressional committees. Removing Greene from a committee or two overturns nothing.
  • Per the U.S. Constitution, Congress manages its own members, even to the point of throwing them out: “Each House [of Congress] may determine the rules of its proceedings, punish its members for disorderly behavior, and, with the concurrence of two-thirds, expel a member.”

Stefanik’s excuse for taking Greene’s side is so full of holes, it’s invisible. It is amusing, however, that she would point to the will of the voters, considering it was she who, a month ago, was doing her best to undermine the election results in Georgia.

Local editorials are written by the Post-Star editorial board, which includes Ben Rogers, president and director of local sales and marketing; Brian Corcoran, regional finance director and former publisher; Will Doolittle, projects editor; and Bob Condon, local news editor.


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