Republican Reps. Marjorie Taylor Greene and Matt Gaetz are receiving a small win in court as they attempt to sue two California cities and nine civil rights organizations for canceling a pair of rallies scheduled in 2021. Here’s everything you need to know about the case!

Rallies In Anaheim And Riverside Were Cancelled

In 2021, Gaetz and Greene scheduled a series of ‘America First’ rallies across the country – where they helped Donald Trump spread his false claims about the 2020 general election, which saw Trump lose to current President Joe Biden. 

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The rally was initially scheduled to take place in Laguna Hills, but it was moved to Riverside after the group experienced setbacks. Those setbacks continued, and they moved the rally to Anaheim—just to have it canceled for a third time. 

Ended Up Holding Protest At Riverside City Hall

Gaetz and Greene were resilient. They didn’t let Southern California get in the way of rallying their voters, and instead, they scheduled a protest outside Riverside City Hall on July 17. 

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In a video posted to X at the time, Gaetz clarified that they were organizing a peaceful protest outside Riverside City Hall. He called for all California ‘PATRIOTS’ to join in. They also peddled lies about the 2020 election and COVID-19 mandates. 

MTG And Gaetz File Lawsuit In July 2023

In July 2023, MTG and Gaetz officially filed their lawsuit against Anaheim and Riverside. “They may try to shut down our venues, but we will take this fight to them in the courts, in the halls of Congress, and if necessary, in the streets,” said Gaetz in 2021.

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Meanwhile, a spokesperson for the city of Anaheim claimed that the rally was canceled due to security concerns – and that there was nothing political behind the decision, which was made by the owner of the venue (not the city itself). 

Claim Their First Amendment Rights Were Taken From Them

The lawsuit made one simple claim—that Gaetz and MTG had their right to freedom of speech taken from them when they attempted to hold a rally in multiple cities without success. 

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“The cancellation of these events based on the speakers’ viewpoints is a clear violation of well-settled law concerning the Freedom of Speech and Freedom of Association guaranteed by the First Amendment of the United States Constitution, as incorporated and made applicable to the States by the Fourteenth Amendment of the United States Constitution,” the lawsuit states.

Civil Rights Organizations Added As Defendants

Gaetz and Greene didn’t just list the cities of Anaheim and Riverside as codefendants – they also added a group of civil rights organizations to the lawsuit for what they described as conspiring against them. 

Those included are the League of Women Voters, the NAACP, the League of United Latin American Citizens, Unidos for La Causa, Women’s March Action, the Riverside County Democratic Party, Antiracist Riverside, and Occupy Democrats. 

Judge Allows Gaets And MTG To Move Forward With Lawsuit

On Friday (March 22), U.S. District Judge Hernán Vera issued an opinion that half-sided with Gaetz and Greene and half-criticized them for what they were doing. All in all, Vera found that the two Representatives could move forward with their lawsuit. 

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According to Vera, Gaetz and Greene had adequate grounds to allege that having their rallies canceled in 2021 was ‘expressly predicated on viewpoint discrimination.’ Therefore, they had every right to file a lawsuit against the two cities. 

Judge Calls Their Claims A ‘Conspiracy Theory’ 

That said, Vera also took a moment to call the two Representatives out for what they described as ‘a conspiracy theory that relies purely on conjecture.’ He added that the complaints are ‘utterly devoid of any specifics plausibly alleging such an agreement.’ 

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“The effect of Plaintiffs’ unprecedented and stunningly deficient pleading — haling nine civil rights groups into federal court for speaking out against an event — should shock in equal measure civic members from across the political spectrum,” he added.

Marjorie Taylor Greene Fighting For Re-Election In Georgia

Marjorie Taylor Greene has served as the U.S. representative for Georgia’s 14th congressional district since 2021. She defeated Democrat Kevin Van Ausdal by a wide margin in the 2020 general election – and nearly gained 75% of the votes in the process. 

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Her support was thinning by the 2022 general election, but she still managed to Jennifer Strahan in the Republican primary and went on to receive 66% of the votes in the general election – defeating Democratic nominee Marcus Flowers for a second term. 

MTG Expected To Win a Third Term In November

Early reports suggested that MTG would not run for re-election in 2024, but those reports have been debunked. She, instead, is the only Republican in the primary race and is expected to defeat the Democratic nominee – whoever it turns out to be. 

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As of right now, the remaining Democratic candidates include Clarence Blalock, Shawn Harris, Deric Houston, and Joseph Leigh. Bart Bryant and Tambrei Cash have already withdrawn, while Harris is gaining traction as the likely nominee. 

Matt Gaetz Running For Re-Election In Florida

Matt Gaetz has served as the U.S. representative for Florida’s 1st congressional district since 2017. He originally wanted to run for the Senate and had hopes of replacing his father, who was term-limited in 2016. He switched his ambition eight months before the election. 

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He won the Republican primary in 2016 and defeated Democratic nominee Steven Specht with 69 percent of the vote. He then ran for re-election in 2018, 2020, and 2022, beating out the Democratic challengers each time. 

Gaetz Expected To Earn Republican Nomination In 2024

Gaetz is currently running against four other Republican candidates in the primary – Todd Jennings, William McPhillips, John Mills, and Christine Santiago. The polls open on August 20, and Gaetz is expected to beat them out.

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As far as Democrats go, Gaetz will likely be challenged by Gay Valimont – who describes herself as a ‘dedicated community member, mother, and advocate’ in Florida’s 1st congressional district.

Two Of Donald Trump’s Biggest Supporters In The House

Gaetz and MTG have been two of Donald Trump’s biggest supporters in the House of Representatives ever since they took office. They’ve not only helped Trump spread his lies and false accusations, but they’ve even created some of their own lies. 

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With both Republican nominees expected to remain in office for at least another two years, Americans can expect to see them continue to support Trump’s rhetoric and negativity.