Marjorie Taylor Greene’s fur coat on the State of the Union despatched a message


Shut your eyes for a second and consider an individual carrying head-to-toe white in a room filled with others clad in semiformal apparel. Because the specifics begin to fill in, what do you image? A bride, radiant, coming down the aisle? A brand new child in frills, being christened or baptized? Or perhaps a priest, in vestments, on the helm of Christmas or Easter Mass?

When one makes the choice to put on an all-white outfit to a gathering the place many can have defaulted to a dignified darkish or jewel tone, one makes a selection — not simply to be the de facto focus, however to invoke one thing pure, even holy. There’s a cause company aren’t purported to put on white to a marriage; there’s additionally a cause Jesus is so typically pictured in white. When Marjorie Taylor Greene wore a white coat with a fur collar whereas heckling the president throughout his State of the Union handle on Tuesday evening, many on social media noticed Cruella de Vil — however Greene appears to have been aiming for one thing just a little extra allegorical.

Greene’s outfit Tuesday — a white, knee-length gown paired with an ecru Overland alpaca wool coat with an alpaca fur trim on the hood and collar — was shocking for a handful of causes. Not solely is a white ensemble an uncommon selection for the wintry, business-formal State of the Union (and a coat an uncommon selection for an indoor occasion), however the silhouette itself, luxe, frothy and hyperfeminine, was considerably exterior the norm for Greene, who tends to go for clear strains and sometimes wears black or purple.

After all, Greene has set an expectation by this level that when she attends such an occasion, she’ll probably, a minimum of momentarily, pull the main target to herself. Her outfit on Tuesday was an ideal selection for a disrupter: A gleaming white outfit, in spite of everything, handily meets the wants of somebody who needs to face out and be simply noticed by onlookers and cameras.

Greene wasn’t the one member of Congress making a trend assertion within the Home chamber Tuesday evening. Kyrsten Sinema, the senator from Arizona who not too long ago switched her social gathering affiliation from Democratic to Impartial, wore a puff-sleeve canary-colored gown (which drew comparisons to Large Chook and a Teletubby). And it’s not the primary time white has been worn to the State of the Union: Famously, Democratic women wore suffragist white in 2019, a century after girls gained the best to vote in U.S. elections, and once more in 2020. However there’s a distinction between a horde of individuals coordinating to decorate in the identical hanging coloration and one individual making a stark coloration selection alone. The previous emphasizes group solidarity; the latter pulls the highlight onto one particular person.

A spokesman for Greene informed The Washington Publish by way of electronic mail that the congresswoman purchased the coat whereas campaigning towards former Rep. Liz Cheney (R) in Wyoming, and that she wore the white ensemble “to spotlight one thing President Biden refused to handle in his speech,” the white Chinese spy balloon. Greene additionally carried a balloon around Capitol Hill forward of the occasion. (Biden alluded to the subject by saying, “As we made clear final week, if China threatens our sovereignty, we’ll act to guard our nation. And we did.”)

Head-to-toe white, after all, also can include a robust whiff of the messianic. As profiles of Greene level out, amongst her base of loyal voters, she’s seen as a crusader for the Christian trigger: An October New York Times story by Robert Draper notes that right-wing Christian leaders have prayed to God on stay tv alongside Greene, one declaring, “You might be extremely favored, you’ll not fail, in Jesus’ title, Amen,” and the opposite asking God that Greene sometime be elected president of the USA.

In her public appearances, too, Greene is sometimes obtained with one thing approaching reverence. “When she did arrive, the tardiness was forgiven and the Cobb County Republican Social gathering’s November breakfast was made new,” Elaina Plott Calabro wrote in The Atlantic in December. “She wasn’t greeted. She was beheld, like a spiritual apparition. Feelings verged on rapture.”

Evangelical Christians sometimes emphasize that Jesus himself is portrayed within the Bible as a teller of unpopular truths, a savior who was nonetheless persecuted for exposing and condemning false teachings. On Tuesday evening, Greene’s furry white coat collar encircled her face in a halo of soppy gentle when she shouted “Liar!” on the President. In Greene’s social gathering, the place evangelical Christianity and politics are ever converging, absolutely that individual bit of symbolism wasn’t misplaced.

This story has been up to date.

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