A MAGA soldier from a deep-red district, Greene spent her first few years in office as a thorn in the side of House GOP leadership. Her attention-seeking, Biden-bashing, pro-Trump antics endeared her to the conservative base as much as they alienated her with GOP leaders. And she owned the persona unapologetically.
But lately, a different Marjorie Taylor Greene has emerged—one who’s found favor with Speaker Kevin McCarthy and scorn from the conservative allies who once adored her. And according to a text message Greene sent to Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) on Friday, Greene may be even more done with certain MAGA influencers than they are with her.
Exactly who is the most upset is open for debate. The far-right instigators who spent years cheering Greene on as a martyr of their cause now say she’s lost the plot. They’re fuming about her support for McCarthy’s debt limit deal, which passed last week on a bipartisan basis, and her coziness with McCarthy in general, which was illustrated in January when she supported him for speaker on all 15 ballots.
More recently, Greene cheering on the decision to allow only a select group of conservative journalists to see unreleased Jan. 6 tapes—instead of releasing them to the public—has also infuriated a small but vocal group on the right.
It’s perhaps an unintentional set of repercussions for what seemed like an intentional rebrand by Greene over the past few months: aligning herself with McCarthy through the speakership battle, rejoining congressional committees that she lost last term, opening up to the press, and keeping it (sort of) together.
The subtle transformations have left Greene’s newfound foes calling for retribution in the traditional conservative way: a primary challenge.
In the past week, former Trump administration official-turned-podcaster Steve Bannon led the charge, calling for Greene to be primaried by a more right-wing candidate who is “REAL MAGA.”
A fringe set of far-right allies soon followed.
“I 100 percent support a challenge to MTG, and look forward to meeting and helping a serious challenge to her,” Stew Peters told The Daily Beast.
One figure of the far right, activist and former Florida congressional candidate Laura Loomer, told The Daily Beast she’s already exploring a primary against Greene. As of now, Loomer doesn’t live in Georgia—let alone Greene’s district—but that hasn’t stopped her from wishcasting.
“She took a job from me when she publicly accused me of being crazy… and told Trump not to hire me,” Loomer told The Daily Beast. “I think it’s only fair that I get a shot at taking her job, too.”
“You know what Donald Trump always says? An eye for an eye,” she added.
Loomer went on to claim that Republican officials in Georgia have been trying to recruit her to run in Greene’s seat, though she wouldn’t provide any evidence backing up that claim.
But if far-right characters are fed up with Greene, Greene also appears fed up with them.
In a text obtained by The Daily Beast, sent from Greene to conservative Rep. Matt Gaetz on Friday, the congresswoman acknowledged a falling out.
“I have almost the same identical voting record as Thomas Massie, the most fiscally conservative member of Congress. And I voted with him on this bill,” Greene wrote in the lengthy text, referring to the debt limit deal. “And Bannon, who was senior counsel to Trump in the WH and responsible for the first debt ceiling increase bc Bannon is reckless and no where near fiscally responsible, is now telling everyone I should be primaried.”
“I just had a town hall in Cobb County last night in the most populated area in my district and it was extremely successful. Standing ovation when I went in and standing ovation when I left,” Greene continued.
Gaetz was one of the leading voices and last holdouts against McCarthy becoming speaker—a standoff that Greene was on the other side of, as she worked to help McCarthy secure the votes. Greene, Gaetz, and Rep. Lauren Boebert (R-CO) used to be a sort of outcast triumvirate in Congress, but that too has crumbled as Greene has taken a new approach.
Recently, Greene has been at odds with some members of the House Freedom Caucus. The congresswoman last week had a number of tiffs with conservatives who were against the debt limit deal, including a Twitter back-and-forth with Rep. Chip Roy (R-TX). But even before the flame war with Roy, as The Daily Beast reported this past January, Greene had a spat with Boebert in the Speaker’s Lobby bathroom over opposing McCarthy’s speakership bid.
Greene has seemed downright enthusiastic about burning those bridges. In her lengthy text to Gaetz, she suggested that severing certain relationships was by design.
“Steve, Loomer, and any other POS attacking me will not beat me,” she wrote. “Because of that people have been reaching out to me because they don’t like what Steve is doing to me… I’m at a place in my life where removing toxic and bad people out of my life makes me very happy.”
Elsewhere in the text message, Greene ripped into Bannon over his involvement in the “We Build the Wall” scheme, which prosecutors are once again going after him for.
“I donated to We Build The Wall campaign. I remember how it said 100% of the donations went to building the wall,” she wrote. “I was one of the many naive people that believed in people and movements because I hoped so badly good things could happen.”
As Greene sees it, partnering with Bannon is a thing of the past.
“Steve and I aren’t getting back together,” she wrote to Gaetz. “And if he keeps it up I’ll take the house and kids. I hope you send it to Steve. Because I’m done.”
(Gaetz’s office didn’t respond to a request for comment about the text, as well as a question about whether he had in fact forwarded the message to Bannon. Neither Greene nor Bannon responded either.)
Greene’s aggression toward Bannon and Loomer is at least well-founded. Both are now working to take her job after the congresswoman started aligning herself more with McCarthy. And both are calling attention to a version of Greene that listeners of Bannon’s WarRoom podcast or followers of Loomer’s radical right antics may not love.
Greene has, indisputably, tried to turn the page on the version of herself that often isolated her from the rest of the House GOP. At the start of her time in Congress, Greene led her freshman class as the member who voted against their own party the most. At the end of last term, she’d only voted with McCarthy 70 percent of the time.
This term, she’s voted with McCarthy 94 percent of the time, according to ProPublica.
But for now, Greene doesn’t seem to be sweating a far-right campaign against her.
A source close to Greene called Loomer’s efforts to primary the congresswoman a “waste of her time.”
“If Loomer thinks any of this debt ceiling conversation has hurt her at all, it’s going to be a long, hot year campaigning in northwest Georgia,” the source said. “Pick on someone else you have a chance to beat.”