Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) was fact-checked by the chief of the US Border Patrol after she claimed officers found an “explosive device” near the southern border in January.
Highlighted in green her progress about this so-called threat in a question to Border Patrol Chief Raul Ortiz at a Homeland Security Committee hearing on Wednesday in Texas. However, Ortiz did not clarify the matter when speaking to lawmakers. Then Greene repeated her claim through a tweetalong with a photo of the alleged device, accusing “the cartel” of “planting bombs” and “killing Americans every day through drugs and crime.”
Fox News correspondent Bill Melugin shared the tweet, adding that he had spoken to a “senior CBP source” who said the object was a fake. “Although it seemed nefarious, I was told it contained no explosives,” he tweeted.
Soon after, Ortiz chimed in with a tweet.
“Today I testified before the Homeland Security Committee and it was alleged that officers found an explosive device near the border,” he wrote, sharing the same image Greene posted. “At a briefing in January, management was notified that officers found a duct taped ball filled with sand that was not considered a threat to officers/public.”
Green refused to withdrawinsisting that unnamed Border Patrol agents had told her otherwise.
“I’m just explaining what I was told today,” she said.
When reached for comment by HuffPost, Greene’s spokesperson did not clarify Greene’s sources or provide any evidence, instead writing, “Stop being a state-sponsored propagandist.”
Greene, an anti-immigration hardliner, has hammered the Biden administration over undocumented US border crossings from Mexico, often using incorrect numbers. Last month she was ridiculed after accusing the government of allowing “6 billion” people to enter the US illegally (she later updated the figure to 6 million – which is still dubious).
Weeks ago, she used the deaths of two brothers who died of fentanyl poisoning to attack the Biden administration for its “refusal to secure our border and stop the cartels.” [sic] of killing Americans every day.” When a fact-checker pointed out that those men died in 2020, when Donald Trump, not Biden, was president, Greene’s spokesperson told him that a lot of people had died of drugs under Biden and “do you think they give a fuck about your bullshit ?” fact checking?'”
Greene also leaned into the controversial white supremacist “invasion” and
“substitute” language in its border security advocacy. Wednesday she tweeted a graph on encounters with illegal migrants, write: “We have no idea who or what crosses our southern border. But we do know that we are being systematically and deliberately replaced by the open-border policies of Joe Biden and the Democrats.”