TALLAHASSEE — A video of Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) cajoling David Hogg, a gun control activist and Parkland shooting survivor, years ago surfaced online Wednesday, fueling a new wave of outrage over the Georgia Republican’s history of questioning a dark chapter in Florida that left 17 dead.
Greene, in the video, which was apparently filmed just weeks after the 2018 Parkland shooting, calls Hogg a “coward” because he walks away from her and complains Hogg was able to meet with senators. “He had 30 appointments where he went around and got to talk to senators. I got to talk to none,” Greene said, adding “Guess what? I’m a gun owner. I’m an American citizen. And I have nothing. But this guy with his George Soros funding and his major liberal funding has got everything.”
Fred Guttenberg, whose daughter was one of the victims in the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, put up the video on Twitter as part of his campaign to highlight Greene’s positions on the issue.
“She is going to confront her lies,” he said in a phone interview on Wednesday. “She is a fraud. She has no place being the halls of Congress. I do intend to bring her evidence of my daughter’s murder.”
The video also shows Greene following Hogg down the street as he walks toward the U.S. Capitol. Greene asks why Hogg supports “red flag laws” — which are measures that allow police to ask a judge to let them take away someone’s firearms if the person is seen as a potential danger. Florida’s then-Gov. Rick Scott, a Republican, signed a measure that included a red flag law in the aftermath of the Parkland killings.
Guttenberg has been confronting the freshman lawmaker online for the past week, after social media posts surfaced from two years ago show Greene siding with conspiracy theories that the Parkland shooting was staged. He has vowed to eventually to meet Greene face-to-face so he can show her proof that his 14-year-old daughter Jaime was gunned down. The congresswoman has already become a political lightning rod for embracing the QAnon conspiracy theory and for a long string of racist comments before she was elected in a conservative district in November.
Rep. Lucy McBath (D-Fla.) had circulated the video in November 2019. In the interview, Guttenberg said he knew the video was taken before Greene was elected to Congress last year, but said he did not become aware of it until Tuesday evening.
The unearthing of Greene’s past comments has already caused a firestorm for Republicans from Democrats and their allies. A super PAC targeting Sen. Marco Rubio — “Retire Rubio” — questioned why the senator wasn’t condemning Greene’s “harassment” of Hogg.
Neither Rubio’s nor Scott’s office responded to requests for comment about the Greene video and her denunciation of red flag laws.
On Wednesday, Hogg weighed in on the video, saying on Twitter that “after surviving gun violence this is just 1/10 of the 1% of the harassment advocates for gun control have to deal with.”
He added: “You think we want to be doing this? @mtgreenee. F— no — I’d much rather be able to be a college student but I & others can’t & you know why? Bc corrupt politicians like you have made it so it’s on the survivors of Gun violence to end gun violence bc you can’t do your damn job.”
When asked for comment about Greene’s video, her office pointed to a statement the Georgia representative put out last week on Twitter where she called “gun-free zones” a failure and blamed the Parkland shooting on school resource officer Scot Peterson. While the shooting was going on, Peterson took cover and retreated, according to the state commission set up in the aftermath to investigate the event.
Rep. Ted Deutch, a South Florida Democrat whose district includes the high school, tweeted Wednesday afternoon that the pain and trauma the attack left on the community still reverberates today. “I encouraged the survivors to come to DC to confront Members of Congress about their cowardice and failure to act,” he said. “I know they’ll be back to confront these cruel, despicable lies.”
Florida Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried, a Democrat, said that Hogg has shown “bravery in his work for commonsense gun reform.” She called Greene’s behavior “cowardly” and said “it’s a political stunt and unbecoming of a member of Congress.”