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Pelosi: Greene's 'verbal assault' of Ocasio-Cortez could be a matter for Ethics Committee

Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy Pelosi Pelosi says she's giving Senate more time on Jan. 6 commission Ocasio-Cortez, Gillibrand and Moulton call for more high-speed rail funding in infrastructure package Pelosi picks Democrats for special panel tackling inequality MORE (D-Calif.) called Rep. Marjorie Taylor GreeneMarjorie Taylor GreeneGOP efforts to downplay danger of Capitol riot increase The Memo: What now for anti-Trump Republicans? Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene says she's meeting with Trump 'soon' in Florida MORE’s (R-Ga.) confrontation with Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-CortezAlexandria Ocasio-CortezHillary Clinton backs Shontel Brown in Ohio congressional race Ocasio-Cortez, Gillibrand and Moulton call for more high-speed rail funding in infrastructure package Pelosi picks Democrats for special panel tackling inequality MORE (D-N.Y.) Wednesday a “verbal assault,” adding that the matter could be brought forth before the House Ethics Committee. 

During her weekly press conference Thursday, Pelosi condemned Greene over an incident, witnessed by two Washington Post reporters, in which Greene reportedly shouted at Ocasio-Cortez as she exited the House chamber and asked the Democratic congresswoman why she supported antifa and Black Lives Matter, arguing they were “terrorist” groups. 

Greene also reportedly questioned Ocasio-Cortez for not publicly debating her on the Green New Deal, shouting, “You don’t care about the American people,” according to the Post.

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Greene continued shouting at Ocasio-Cortez as the New York lawmaker continued walking. She did not stop to address her colleague. 

“Why do you support terrorists and antifa?” Greene questioned before she told reporters that the Democrat was a “chicken.” 

On Thursday, Pelosi said Greene’s behavior was “so beyond the pale of anything that is in keeping with bringing honor to the House,” adding, “It probably is a matter for the Ethics Committee.” 

Pelosi, who previously served on the Ethics Committee for seven years, added Thursday that Greene’s actions were “beneath the dignity of a person serving in the Congress of the United States.” 

The speaker said that Greene’s remarks were also “a cause for trauma and fear among members, especially on the heels of an insurrection.” 

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Pelosi’s comments came after Rep. Hakeem JeffriesHakeem Sekou JeffriesDemocrats seek staffer salary boost to compete with K Street Congress tiptoes back to normality post-pandemic White House to Democrats: Get ready to go it alone on infrastructure MORE (D-N.Y.), the chairman of the House Democratic Caucus, earlier Thursday also called on the Ethics Committee to look into the incident. 

“She is certainly engaged in threatening behavior, and I think ultimately this is something that may have to be evaluated by the Ethics Committee,” he said of Greene during an appearance on CNN’s “New Day.” 

“Congresswoman Ocasio-Cortez has shown tremendous restraint and should be commended in that regard because it appears that the so-called congresswoman from Georgia is stalking her,” he added. 

Ocasio-Cortez spokesperson Lauren Hitt told the Post following the reported incident, “We hope leadership and the Sergeant at Arms will take real steps to make Congress a safe, civil place for all Members and staff,” noting that Rep. Cori Bush (D-Mo.) earlier this year said she was moving her office away from Greene’s due to safety concerns. She said that Greene berated her in a hallway. 

Ethics Committee Staff Director and Chief Council Tom Rust declined to comment to The Hill on whether the committee has any plans to look into the reported confrontation.

-Updated 2:05 p.m.