Greene and Boebert trade public barbs over McCarthy, ‘space lasers’
Tension between conservative firebrand Reps. Lauren Boebert (R-Colo.) and Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) has spilled into public view, with the two trading barbs over House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy’s (R-Calif.) Speakership ambitions, controversial and fringe statements Greene has made, and Boebert’s narrow reelection.
A comment from Boebert about Greene during an interview on Monday alongside Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) launched the testy and public back-and-forth between the two lawmakers.
“You know, I’ve been aligned with Marjorie and accused of believing a lot of the things that she believes in,” Boebert told conservative commentator Charlie Kirk at a Turning Point USA conference when asked about Greene’s support for McCarthy. “I don’t believe in this, just like I don’t believe in Russian space lasers — Jewish space lasers and all of this.”
Boebert’s comment was a reference to a 2018 Facebook post from Greene in which she floated that a “laser beam or light beam” from “space solar generators” could be to blame for wildfires in California, also mentioning the “Rothschild Inc.” Greene later said she did not know the Rothschilds have long been at the center of antisemitic conspiracy theories.
Greene fired back at Boebert on Twitter on Monday evening, noting Boebert’s slimmer-than-expected reelection win and accusing her of being childish.
“I’ve supported and donated to Lauren Boebert. President Trump has supported and donated to Lauren Boebert. Kevin McCarthy has supported and donated to Lauren Boebert. She just barely came through by 500 votes,” Greene said. “She gladly takes our $$$ but when she’s been asked: Lauren refuses to endorse President Trump, she refuses to support Kevin McCarthy, and she childishly threw me under the bus for a cheap sound bite.”
Boebert responded to Greene in comments to the Daily Caller on Monday, saying she supports Trump and that he is the leader of the Republican Party.
Greene and Boebert were both elected to the House for the first time in 2020 and won reelection in 2022. The two are members of the confrontational right-wing House Freedom Caucus and have been vocal allies of Trump. In one notable moment, they both chanted, “Build the wall!” during President Biden’s State of the Union address this year.
But they have taken very different stances on whether McCarthy should be Speaker.
Boebert has withheld support for McCarthy, saying that her “red line” is restoring any member’s ability to make a “motion to vacate the chair” to force a vote on ousting the Speaker.
Greene, on the other hand, has emerged as one of McCarthy’s most vocal supporters, warning that a more moderate alternative could win the Speakership if House Republicans do not unify around him.
McCarthy has pledged to put Greene back on committees after she was stripped of her assignments over social media interactions, but Greene has said McCarthy has not made any promises regarding which committees she might sit on.
In comments to the Daily Caller on Monday, Boebert dug in on her criticism of Greene and expressed frustration about being tied to her fringe statements and actions.
“I’ve been asked to explain MTG’s belief in Jewish space lasers, why she showed up to a white supremacist’s conference, and now why she’s blindly following Kevin McCarthy and I’m not going to go there,” Boebert said.
Greene earlier this year spoke at a conference hosted by white nationalist Nick Fuentes. Last month, after Fuentes attended a dinner with Trump and Ye, the rapper formerly known as Kanye West, Greene condemned Fuentes. She said that she would not have spoken at the conference had she known his views but did not regret her message.
“The only person who can answer for Marjorie’s words and actions is Marjorie. Let me be very clear, I support President Trump. Period. President Trump is a friend and the leader of the Republican party,” Boebert said.
Boebert’s “space laser” dig echoed a similar quip from Gaetz last month.
“Whatever Kevin has promised Marjorie Taylor Greene, I guarantee you this: At the first opportunity, he will zap her faster than you can say Jewish space laser,” Gaetz, who is among a small group of House Republicans vocally opposing McCarthy’s Speakership bid, said on former Trump adviser Stephen Bannon’s “War Room” show in November.
But Gaetz, who went on a speaking tour with Greene last year, soon made clear that he is an “admirer” of Greene’s and praised her for “inspiring our patriotic fellow Americans.”
Appearing in the same interview with Boebert on Monday, Gaetz said that while he is “a fan of hers,” they do not see the Speakership battle the same way.