Republican Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia made headlines on Tuesday when she unveiled impeachment articles against Matthew Graves, the U.S. Attorney for the nation’s capital. Her announcement was strategically timed to coincide with Graves’ testimony at a House Oversight Committee hearing on crime in Washington, adding an extra layer of drama to the proceedings.
Greene was unflinching in her criticism of Graves, accusing his office of selective law enforcement. While they persistently prosecute those involved in the U.S. Capitol incident on January 6, 2021, she argued, they have consistently failed to pursue individuals responsible for crimes committed during the 2020 Black Lives Matter riots.
In her address to Graves, Greene highlighted the unique power he holds in his position, able to prosecute both local and federal cases. Yet, she pointed out, his office has declined to prosecute 67% of those arrested in 2022. Instead, she claimed, they appear to have narrowed their focus to the events of a single day, January 6.
Amidst this selective prosecution, Greene noted, crime rates in the city have soared, with notable increases in murders, sexual abuse, and property crimes. “Just yesterday morning, a little innocent 12-year-old girl was shot while sleeping in her own bed by another rampant, violent criminal who has probably been previously arrested and not prosecuted,” she lamented.
The Georgia representative questioned Graves on whether the residents of the area were more concerned about the rising crime rates or incidents from over two years ago. She condemned him for what she sees as an abuse of his position, pursuing aggressive prosecutions against those involved in the January 6 incident while neglecting to address pressing local crime issues.
Greene cited the tragic case of Matthew Perna, who took his own life due to the stress of aggressive prosecution. She argued that this was indicative of the harm caused by the weaponization of the Department of Justice.
Concluding her impassioned speech, Greene took a bold step. “Because you refuse to prosecute real criminals that are violating all the crimes here in Washington, D.C. … I am introducing articles of impeachment on you, Mr. Graves,” she declared, yielding back the remainder of her time.
As promised, Greene introduced the impeachment articles on Tuesday. In a news release, she reiterated her stance, arguing that Graves’ actions amounted to a “total dereliction of duty.” She maintained that his aggressive pursuit of nonviolent defendants involved in a political protest demonstrated a dangerous trend towards criminalizing political dissent.
Matthew Graves assumed his position as U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia in November 2021, during the first year of President Joe Biden’s term. The current debate surrounding his performance serves as a timely reminder of the need for balanced, impartial justice in our political landscape.