Democrat admits ‘unparliamentary language’ after criticism of Greene

Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Md.) on Thursday withdrew words he made on the floor after he called Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) a “cheerleader for the insurrection,” admitting that he had used “unparliamentary language” on the House floor.

Raskin, the lead manager during former President Trump’s second impeachment trial in 2021, did so after Rep. Guy Reschenthaler (R-Pa.) asked for Raskin’s words to be taken down, a request that is made if lawmakers use offensive language or make remarks that could be considered unparliamentary.

The dispute took place during a debate on the rule for the Ukraine Democracy Defense Lend-Lease Act, legislation that would essentially speed up the delivery of military aid to Ukraine as it fights off an invasion by Russia.

Raskin criticized Greene immediately after her own two-minute speech on the bill. Greene had not mentioned Ukraine in her own remarks, but had focused on what she said was an “invasion” at the southern border. Greene has been critical of the Biden administration’s immigration policies.

“Gentlelady talked about a massive invasion. We had a massive invasion of our own chamber. And she continued to be a cheerleader for the insurrection, and deny what happened here,” an animated Raskin said.

Reschenthaler at that point asked for Raskin’s words to be taken down.

There was then a pause of about 15 minutes in proceedings before Raskin asked for unanimous consent to withdraw his words, which was agreed to without objection. He admitted to using “unparliamentary language.”

“The House rules do forbid engaging in personalities and I accept the advice of the parliamentarian that I used unparliamentary language to make my point and I certainly respect the necessity for parliamentary decorum,” the Maryland Democrat said.

Raskin later told The Hill that “unparliamentary does not mean untrue.” He said he wanted to discuss Greene’s remarks on the Russian invasion of Ukraine and her past comments about “NATO Nazis.”

He said Republicans objected to the comments when he “took a little artistic license” and called Greene a cheerleader for the insurrection.

“I accept the idea that they were unparliamentary but I do not believe they were untrue,” he added.

Greene and Raskin have a history of going after one another.

During his speech on Thursday, Raskin also criticized Greene for previous comments she’d made while he was giving a floor speech, saying she had “heckled” him “continuously” when he was on the floor.

“It was like ‘The Rocky Horror Picture Show’ in here, with her chanting about the Russia hoax and Russia this and Russia that. Now she had the opportunity to tell the world what her views about Russia are. I put them out there exactly, what she has said,” he said, recalling her previous remarks.

Raskin and Greene have exchanged words in the past.

In October, Greene approached Raskin and Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) on the House floor as voting was beginning for a resolution to hold Stephen Bannon, an ex-adviser of former President Trump, in contempt for refusing to obey subpoenas. The drama began when Greene asked Raskin when he would look into violence linked to the Black Lives Matter protests.

At one point in the tangle, Greene called Cheney “a joke.”

Updated at 5:16 p.m.