Rep Nancy Mace excoriated fellow Republican Rep Marjorie Taylor Greene as they have continued to criticise each other and said she did not fear a primary challenge backed by the right-wing of her party.
Ahead of votes, Ms Mace told reporters “All I can say about Marjorie Taylor Greene is bless her f**king heart.”
Ms Mace, who flipped a district in South Carolina, spoke with The Independent after House votes Monday evening as the two freshmen traded barbs on Twitter all Tuesday.
When asked about what she thought about the fact House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy had not disciplined Ms Greene about her words about her, she told The Independent, she could only speak for herself.
“But I have no tolerance for racism, bigotry, religious bigotry, bullshit or lies by anybody, including Marjorie Taylor Greene,” she said. “She’s a liar and a grifter of the first order. And I don’t tolerate from Democrats or Republicans and I’ve been clear, I’ve been consistent on that since the day I got elected and I’m not going to put up with any of her bullsh*t, never have and never will.”
The criticism began in earnest after Ms Greene’s political ally, Rep Lauren Boebert of Colorado, was caught on video making Islamophobic remarks about Rep Ilhan Omar, who wears a hijab, calling her part of “the jihad squad” and implying Ms Omar would blow up the Capitol if she had a backpack on.
In response, Ms Mace criticised Ms Boebert but also commended her for apologising. In response, Ms Greene tweeted that Ms Mace was “the trash in the GOP Conference” and said she was “pro-abort” to imply she supported abortion rights. Ms Mace tweeted back that Ms Greene is a “religious bigot” and used emojis to call her “batsh**t” crazy.
Ms Mace criticised Ms Greene for saying she supported abortion rights as a state legislator, she supported rape and incest exemptions for laws that restrict abortion as soon as a heartbeat is detected for the fetus.
“To have Congresswoman Greene continue with the lies about my record, I’m not going to put up with it,” she said. “She has nothing going on in her life, she will never accomplish anything for the people she represents and the people of this country. I have already and I will continue to do so because I work hard and will continue to do that.”
Ms Mace has spoken about the need for these because she herself was raped when she was in high school, which led her to drop out of high school.
“I’ve been pro-life my entire life and to attack me as a woman who’s been raped, I was a victim of rape when I was 16, I have voted to defund Planned Parenthood every chance I could, I’ve voted for South Carolina’s fetal heartbeat bill, we have exceptions for women who’ve been raped and for kids and women who are victims of incest because I’ve advocated for those victims and because of that,” she said. “And that’s where most of America is, and to attack a victim of rape because of those positions is disgusting and it’s wrong.”
Ms Mace said positions like Ms Greene’s will make it harder to welcome women into the fold.
“As a party, we can’t bring other women into the fold or independents, or women who’ve been victims like myself, who are survivors like myself, we’re doing nothing to advocate for them if we let that voice be the majority voice and it’s not and it never will be,” she said.
Similarly, Ms Greene tweeted that she spoke to former president Donald Trump about running a primary challenger to her. Mr Trump has hinted that he wants a primary challenger to Ms Mace and other Republicans he considers apostates.
“It’s like going and running and tattle-tale-ing to the principal because you have no ideas of your own and you can’t stand on your own two feet,” she told reporters. “She has no ideas or any type of policy that will ever move forward because she can’t do it. She’s got to run to someone who’s bigger than her and better than her for backup.”
When asked whether she was afraid of a primary challenge, Ms Mace noted the swing nature of her district. Last year, she beat Democratic Rep Joe Cunningham, who himself flipped the seat after a Trump-backed Republican beat incumbent Republican Rep Mark Sanford in the primary.
“I won by one point. My district will get slightly better, it looks like, maybe, but I’ll always be in a swing district,” she said. “I feel very confident not only about my primary but about the general election and where my district is headed.”
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