Kevin McCarthy, Steve Scalise, Others Blast Marjorie Taylor Greene for Holocaust Comments

Leaders of Congress in both parties are condemning controversial Republican Georgia Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene, who recently compared COVID-19 mask mandates to requirements put on Jewish people during the Holocaust.

Republican House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy called her statements "appalling," while Democratic Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer described them as "sickening" Monday morning.

Greene—who has been a lightening rod for her controversial statements over the U.S. presidential election, refusal to wear a mask on the House floor, and attacks on Democratic lawmakers that ultimately led to her removal from all committee assignments—has repeatedly compared the masks that have curbed the ongoing coronavirus pandemic to the gold stars that Jews were required to wear during the Holocaust.

"Marjorie is wrong, and her intentional decision to compare the horrors of the Holocaust with wearing masks is appalling," McCarthy said in a statement. "The Holocaust is the greatest atrocity committed in history. The fact that this needs to be stated today is deeply troubling."

McCarthy and the GOP minority in the House has mostly stood by Greene, even as the Democrat majority stripped her of her committee assignments earlier this year.

"These are sickening, reprehensible comments, and she should stop this vile language immediately," Schumer said on the Senate floor Tuesday.

House Minority Whip Steve Scalise, the GOP's No. 2 in the chamber from Louisiana, also condemned Greene's remarks.

"[Scalise] does not agree with these comments and condemns these comparisons to the Holocaust. We also need to be speaking out strongly against the dangerous anti-Semitism that is growing in our streets and in the Democrat party," a Scalise spokeswoman said in a statement.

Greene, who represents a north Georgia district, has been on a tour alongside U.S. Representative Matt Gaetz, a Florida Republican, to build support behind former President Donald Trump's base of conservative voters.

Meanwhile, Greene stood by her comments.

"At a time when the Socialist Democrats and the Jihad Squad are supporting terrorist Hamas, and their supporters are attacking Jewish people on the streets of America, it's never been more important than now to stand up against forced vaccinations and mask mandates that the left is using to discriminate against Americans who refuse to comply," she said in a statement to Newsweek. "Their attempts to shame, ostracize, and brand Americans who choose not to get vaccinated or wear a mask are reminiscent of the great tyrants of history who did the same to those who would not comply."

On Twitter, Greene accused people of "twisting" her words.

"If you care about people NOT being discriminated against or being treated unequally then you would use your platform to be against vaccine passports," she wrote.

Greene also tweeted a story about the University of Virginia requiring students to be vaccinated for in-person classes.

"It appears Nazi practices have already begun on our youth," she wrote. "Show your VAX papers or no in person class for you. This is exactly what I was saying about the gold star."

Marjorie Taylor Greene condemned by Congress leaders
Rep. Marjorie Taylor Green (R-GA) speaks at a press conference on the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians on May 20, 2021 in Washington, DC. Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images