Marjorie Taylor Greene Challenger Says She Was Barred From Town Hall

A Democratic challenging Republican Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene has said she was barred from entering a town hall the congresswoman was holding on Tuesday.

Holly McCormack, who is running against Greene in Georgia's 14th congressional district, said she and other constituents had been kicked out of the event in the state's Catoosa County.

The Democrat also took to Twitter and criticized Greene for the alleged incident, retweeting other users who also claimed to have been denied entry to the town hall event.

The town hall was held in McCormack's hometown of Ringgold, Georgia and the Democrat attempted to attend, according to a press release from her campaign.

"My neighbors and I were barred from attending a town hall held by our Congresswoman, in my hometown, because she doesn't want to answer the tough questions about her failure to work for the people of Georgia," McCormack said.

"If she truly had the best interests of Georgians at heart, she would welcome the opportunity to connect with her constituents, regardless of who they are. Instead, she takes every step possible to avoid accountability," she went on.

"She is in for a rude awakening when I am elected this November," McCormack said.

"I will make every effort to be present across the district, and all will be welcome to ask me the tough questions. Unlike Marge, I will be ready with answers and a track record of progress on the issues that matter most to Georgia families," the Democrat added.

The McCormack campaign said in an email that event organizers claimed the event was "at capacity" but that attendance was in fact low. McCormack claimed on Twitter that her party affiliation was the reason she was barred from the event.

"I tried to attend her town hall tonight, but because I am a Democrat, I was kicked out and not allowed to ask my Representative a question. That won't happen when I'm in Congress," McCormack wrote.

The Democrat shared a photo that she described as "me and other constituents not being allowed in to Marjorie's town hall (it was not nearly at capacity)."

McCormack added in a subsequent tweet: "For as much as Marjorie Taylor Greene talks about communism and censorship, she sure doesn't like me coming to her town hall to ask her a simple question."

She also retweeted posts from other users who said they were Greene's constituents and had been denied entry to the event.

A spokesperson for Greene told Newsweek in a statement on Wednesday: "The event was at capacity" and pointed to a video by posted to Greene's Twitter account on Wednesday morning.

"Capacity for the event was 200 and the facility made an exception to allow 30 more people inside," the spokesperson said, adding that more than 400 verified constituents had registered to attend.

The tweet reported Greene as saying: "It was great speaking with a packed house in Ringgold last night at my District 14 Town Hall!" and featured a video of the Republican waving at an applauding crowd.

McCormack had replied to Greene's tweet on Wednesday, writing: "I was outside (bc you didn't let me and others in) and it sure didn't look like a packed house." She also shared a photo from Tuesday that showed a small number of people at the venue.

Greene's spokesperson also told Newsweek: "This was an official Congressional Town Hall," and said McCormack had mischaracterized the event.

"Every constituent who registered to attend was allowed inside," the spokesperson said. "This is our standard protocol due to security threats Congresswoman Greene receives on a daily basis."

The spokesperson said McCormack "did not register to attend and arrived after the event had started."

The McCormack campaign told Newsweek in a statement on Wednesday that Greene's event was "an official Congressional Town Hall, one in which the congresswoman's constituents, including Holly, should have been welcome to attend."

"Our team only found out about the event yesterday through a single news article. By this time, the link to register had been removed from her website. Only those on the congresswoman's email list and who 'like' her on Facebook were informed of the town hall," the statement said.

The McCormack campaign said they decided to attend in person when they were unable to register online.

"When Holly arrived, her ID was checked and she was confirmed as a resident of the 14th district, and was told she could come in five minutes after the start of the town hall if some registered attendees did not show," the campaign said.

"The organizers soon realized who she was. After a flurry of whispers among organizers who realized who she was, she was told she could not enter. We asked if all who registered had shown, and were told no but that the event was at capacity. Meanwhile, we continued to watch individuals and groups be admitted while we were questioning why we could not enter."

McCormack also issued a statement, saying: "We have a void in leadership in Northwest Georgia. One that caters only to the select few, and not the whole. When I am elected, I will be accessible. I will listen to my constituents regardless of partisanship. Because that's the job, folks."

Greene's spokesperson later disputed McCormack's campaign claims about how the event was publicized, telling Newsweek: "The link to register was removed due to capacity restraints. We had over 400 people register and it was removed."

"The claim that only people on her email list or those that have 'liked' the page is untrue," the spokesperson said. "This event was widely publicized through press releases which were covered by many outlets and on Congresswoman Greene's website. The event was also advertised to residents of the 14th District on Facebook, regardless of if they 'liked' the page or not."

Greene's office pointed to a page about the event on her website and an article from The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Newsweek has asked the McCormack campaign for comment.

Greene's official Twitter account reported that the congresswoman had visited Magnolia Pharmacy in Ringgold ahead of the Catoosa County event to "learn about the challenges facing a local independent pharmacy."

Greene has been one of the most high profile and controversial freshman members of Congress since her election in 2020 and McCormack may be facing an uphill battle to defeat her.

The Republican won Georgia's 14th district with 74.6 percent of the vote.

UPDATE 1/26/22 10.38 a.m. E.T: This article was updated to include statements from Marjorie Taylor Greene's office and Holly McCormack's campaign, and more information.

UPDATE 1/27/22 6.00 a.m. E.T: This article has been updated to include further comment from Greene's office.

Marjorie Taylor Greene Answers Questions
Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) answers questions in front of the House steps while House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy holds a press conference November 17, 2021 in Washington, DC. A Democrat challenging Greene says she was barred from the congresswoman's town hall on Tuesday. Win McNamee/Getty Images