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'Grow A Spine': Parkland Father Fred Guttenberg's Message To Kevin McCarthy On Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene Punishment

MIAMI (CBSMiami/CNN) – "I want Kevin McCarthy to grow a spine." These are just some of the strong words by Fred Guttenberg, father of Parkland school shooting victim Jaime Guttenberg, who spoke out Tuesday morning on CNN saying he wants the House Minority Leader to strip Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene of her duties on the House Education Committee.

McCarthy (R-California) is set to meet with Greene this week to talk about her views, and likely, to dole out some sort of punishment.

Greene has publicly expressed support for the QAnon movement, made Islamophobic and anti-Semitic comments and agreed with the idea of executing Democratic leaders, among many other things.

She is also facing backlash for a video, that went viral last week, showing her angrily confronting Parkland shooting survivor David Hogg and agreeing with people who called the school massacre a "false-flag" event, meaning it was a hoax manufactured by the media to take away gun rights.

"He needs to do more than talk," said Guttenberg, whose daughter was one of 17 people killed in the 2018 Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting.  "If we learned one thing, with her comments yesterday, she's really not going to change what she has to say about anything. Kevin McCarthy needs to tell her to leave."

Guttenberg was referencing a Twitter post by Greene on Monday.

"If Democrats remove me from my committees, I can assure them that the precedent they are setting will be used extensively against members on their side once we regain the majority after the 2022 elections," she tweeted.

According to Politico, McCarthy remains undecided about the best way to deal with Greene.

RELATED: 'She's Demeaning My Son's Memory': Linda Beigel Schulman, Mother Of Parkland Victim After Private Conversation With Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene

Rep. Ted Deutch, whose district includes Parkland, wants McCarthy to take action against Greene as well and doesn't understand his lack of leadership.

"I don't understand the refusal to acknowledge that when someone engages in conspiracy theories and dangerous racist and anti-Semitic and Islamophobic lies... when someone harasses kids who are trying to keep their fellow classmates safe and insults the memory of the loved ones lost by Fred and so many others around the country. I don't understand why Kevin McCarthy can simply say there's no-- there's just no place for this person on any committee, but especially on the House Education Committee, whose job is to help keep our kids safe." Rep. Deutch added, "It's a line in the sand moment for him and his caucus. But if he refuses to do the right things, someone has to stand up for the integrity of the House, the memory of the lives lost and for people like Fred. that's what we're going to do if Kevin McCarthy won't act, we will."

Deutch said he doesn't want Greene to be able to "spew dangerous lies and talk about school shootings as false-flag events from her perch on the education committee."

As for Greene's warning about setting a precedent, Rep. Deutch said this isn't about politics.

"Can we go back to what happened here? The fact that she's been spewing these dangerous, hateful, awful, conspiracy theories that she harassed kids, that she insults the memory of people whose lives have been taken at the hands of killers through gun violence, which Congress must and will act on, that's what this is about. So, we have time for discussions about politics later. Right now we're calling on Kevin McCarthy to do the right thing, to be a leader. Frankly, and I didn't think I would ever say this, to listen to Mitch McConnell and acknowledge that someone who does everything that we've been talking about, doesn't belong on the House Education Committee setting policies that are going to influence our kids."

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, without naming the congresswoman, slammed Greene's embrace of "loony lies and conspiracy theories" in a short but pointed statement Monday night.

"Loony lies and conspiracy theories are cancer for the Republican Party and our country," the Kentucky Republican said. "Somebody who's suggested that perhaps no airplane hit the Pentagon on 9/11, that horrifying school shootings were pre-staged, and that the Clintons crashed JFK Jr.'s airplane is not living in reality. This has nothing to do with the challenges facing American families or the robust debates on substance that can strengthen our party."

Greene tweeted a response to the statement minutes later, saying, "The real cancer for the Republican Party is weak Republicans who only know how to lose gracefully. This is why we are losing our country."


Fred Guttenberg called Greene's warning "meaningless and irrelevant," adding, "Who cares about her warning? This is a woman who has said my daughter, who is on that photo behind me was a false-flag, who said Sandy Hook was a false flag, who said Las Vegas was a false-flag and has a conspiracy theory built around all of it as well. Her warning is meaningless. It's irrelevant. She should be shown her way back to Georgia and that's where she should stay. She should not be anywhere around the halls of Congress."

The House Rules Committee is slated to meet Wednesday to approve a rule for a resolution to kick Greene off the House Education and Labor Committee and the Budget Committee.

The rule would govern the procedures for floor debate ahead of the full House's consideration of the resolution to strip Greene of her committee assignments. It marks the first official step by House Democrats to oust Greene from her assignments.

It's still possible McCarthy could ultimately make the call and save the House from having to hold the vote. But despite the ultimatum, he is not yet tipping his hand on how he will handle Greene, and an aide told CNN that he needs to speak with the congresswoman first.

(©2021 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. Cable News Network, Inc., a Time Warner Company, contributed to this report.)

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