Jamie Raskin blames Republicans who attended Trump trial for drinking before chaotic House hearing

Several GOP representatives including Matt Gaetz and Lauren Boebert took a train from DC to New York for Donald Trump’s trial Thursday

Katie Hawkinson
Saturday 18 May 2024 19:41 BST
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Jamie Raskin says ‘worth investigating’ if members were drinking during explosive committee hearing meeting

A top-ranking House Democrat has accused Republicans who attended Donald Trump’s hush money trial of drinking on the trip before attending an explosive House hearing on Thursday.

A meeting of the House Oversight Committee descended into chaos after GOP firebrand Marjorie Taylor Greene insulted Democratic Representative Jasmine Crockett over her “fake eyelashes.” Ms Crockett then suggested that Ms Greene had a “bleach blond, bad-built butch body.”

Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle later said that alcohol may have been involved. Senior Democrat Jamie Raskin blamed Republican members who had travelled to New York from DC to support Mr Trump in court.

“There was drinking going on in the hearing room on the Republican side,” he told The Hill on Friday, without naming any names.

From left to right, Representatives Anna Paulina Luna, Andy Ogles, Matt Gaetz, Andy Biggs, and Lauren Boebert stand outside the Manhattan criminal court on Thursday to support Donald Trump at his hush money trial
From left to right, Representatives Anna Paulina Luna, Andy Ogles, Matt Gaetz, Andy Biggs, and Lauren Boebert stand outside the Manhattan criminal court on Thursday to support Donald Trump at his hush money trial (AP)

“You had a bunch of members who had skipped legislative votes yesterday in order to go to Donald Trump’s trial...I don’t even want to imagine how much drinking was taking place on the train or up in New York.”

“And these members came back out of control. And the chairman did not rein them in, and the institution pays the price.”

The Republicans who showed up at Mr Trump’s trial on Thursday included Matt Gaetz, Lauren Boebert, Andy Biggs, Michael Cloud, Eli Crane, Matt Gaetz, Bob Good, Diana Harshbarger, Anna Paulina Luna, Ralph Norman and Andy Ogles. They were part of a wave of GOP supporters of the president who attended the Manhattan courthouse in the past week.

No lawmaker directly involved in the Oversight Committee hearing incident, including Ms Greene, attended the trial.

On Thursday, Mr Gaetz invoked Donald Trump’s notorious, and widely condemned, call to the far-right group, the Proud Boys

“Standing back and standing by, Mr. President,” Mr Gaetz wrote on X, along with a photo of himself at the courthouse.

The Independent has contacted lawmakers who attended the trial on Thursday for comment.

Mr Gaetz told The Independent that he did not travel with the group to New York and did not observe any drinking on Thursday.

Mr Raskin called for an investigation into the potential involvement of alcohol surrounding the events at the hearing.

Jasmine Crockett, pictured at the hearing on Thursday, called Marjorie Taylor Greene a ‘bleach blonde bad-built butch body’ after she insulted her ‘fake eyelashes’
Jasmine Crockett, pictured at the hearing on Thursday, called Marjorie Taylor Greene a ‘bleach blonde bad-built butch body’ after she insulted her ‘fake eyelashes’ (US House of Representatives/YouTube )

“I didn’t see the drinking but the gentlelady from New Mexico, Melanie Stansbury, raised it,” Mr Raskin told Fox News at the US Capitol on Friday. “She said ‘there are members drinking in the room,’ and that’s something that is worth investigating if there was in fact drinking taking place.”

Additional unnamed representatives from both parties told Politico they saw members drinking.

Thursday’s hearing was to decide if US Attorney General Merrick Garland could be held in contempt of Congress but turned chaotic when Ms Greene attacked Ms Crockett’s “fake eyelashes.”

“I’d like to know if any Democrats on the committee are employing Judge [Juan] Merchan’s daughter?” Ms Greene asked.

Judge Juan Merchan presiding over Donald Trump’s hush money trial in New York. The former president and other Republicans have attacked Judge Merchan as partisan and highlighted that his daughter has worked for Democrats.

Marjorie Taylor Greene clashes with AOC during House Oversight Committee hearing

“Please tell me what that has to do with Merrick Garland,” Ms Crockett, a Texas Democrat, asked. “Do you know what we’re here for?”

“I don’t think you know what you’re here for,” Ms Greene said. “I think your fake eyelashes are messing up what you’re reading.”

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a progressive Democrat from New York, interjected. “How dare you attack the physical appearance of another person,” she said.

Ms Greene then taunted Ms Ocasio-Cortez, asking if her feelings had been hurt.

“Oh girl, oh baby girl, don’t even play,” Ms Ocasio-Cortez said.

Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (left) and Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene, pictured at the House Oversight Committee hearing, clashed on Thursday
Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (left) and Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene, pictured at the House Oversight Committee hearing, clashed on Thursday (Independent TV)

When Chairman James Comer ruled that Ms Greene’s comments did not violate House rules, Ms Crockett responded.

“If someone on this committee then starts talking about somebody’s bleach blond, bad-built butch body, that would not be engaging in personalities, correct?” she asked the chairman.

Ms Crockett later called Ms Greene “absolutely” racist for her comments. “She is racist. I mean, I don’t have any questions about that,” she said.

She went on to say that Ms Greene and Colorado Republican Representative Lauren Boebert “aren’t getting along. Boebert has clip-ins in her hair. And Boebert wears lashes, too, sometimes it looks like. I don’t know.”

“But she doesn’t attack her for any of that,” Ms Crockett said.

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