Judge rules that GOP Reps. Matt Gaetz, Marjorie Taylor Greene can sue two California cities for canceled rallies

A lawsuit from Reps. Matt Gaetz and Marjorie Taylor Greene against Anaheim and Riverside, accusing the cities of wrongfully canceling their rallies in 2021, can move forward, a federal judge has ruled.

The ruling rejects the cities’ attempts to be dismissed from the case. It does allow political advocacy groups that were also sued to be dismissed.

Judge Hernan D. Vera, in his ruling released March 22, rejected the lawsuit’s claim that the nonprofits conspired with the cities to cancel the rallies and wrote that “the effect of Plaintiffs’ unprecedented and stunningly deficient pleading — hauling 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.”

Those groups included California LULAC, a Hispanic civil rights group, AntiRacist Riverside, the NAACP, League of Women Voters Riverside, Occupy Democrats, Riverside County Democratic Party and Riverside Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.

Gaetz and Greene, both Republic members of Congress, applauded the ruling, promising to return to California to hold the rallies.

“We will win these important Free Speech cases against California cities Riverside and Anaheim and the insane left,” Greene wrote in a post on X, formerly known as Twitter. “Then we will return to CA and hold America First rallies, inviting everyone in California that hates what the Democrats have done to their state and our country!”

A spokesperson for the city of Riverside said the city does not comment on pending litigation.

Mike Lyster, a spokesperson for Anaheim, said, “While we disagree with the decision, it isn’t unusual to see a claim move forward at this early stage, regardless of the court’s initial thoughts on the strengths of the case. We sought to challenge the allegations being made at the first chance possible and remain confident in the city’s position.”