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With a beautiful smile, ruby red lipstick, and razor-sharp intelligence, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez upset the status quo and ushered in a new era in United States politics: Young politicians who are more concerned with movements rather than elections.
Ocasio-Cortez, 33, internationally known as AOC, is an American politician and activist of Puerto Rican descent. She has been the U.S. representative for New York’s 14th congressional district since 2019 as a member of the Democratic Party.
She came onto the scene organically. We watched as she pounded her district pavement and went directly to the voters. Few expected her to get elected, but she did.
Ocasio-Cortez advocated policies championed by Bernie Sanders’ 2016 campaign, such as Medicare for All and tuition-free public college. A former New York City bartender, she backed a Green New Deal, fought for campaign finance reform, a federal job guarantee, and abolishing ICE – issues central to a new generation of Democrats.
She represented then, as she does today, the future of the Democratic Party.
Ocasio-Cortez even overshadowed former president Donald Trump when she slam-dunked 10-term incumbent Joe Crowley in the Democratic primary. Thus, began the reign of AOC.
In her first three months in Congress, Ocasio-Cortez’s life was threatened enough times for Capitol Police to train her staff in risk assessment. Her Twitter following her election climbed from 3.5 million to 13.4 million today. Thousands of people log on to Instagram Live to hear what she has to say or watch as she makes dinner.
On top of that, Ocasio-Cortez and Congresswoman Nydia Velazquez (D-NY) spearheaded the Puerto Rico Self-Determination Act of 2021. It calls for a “status convention“ of delegates elected by Puerto Rican voters, finally allowing Puerto Ricans, not Congress, to determine the colony’s future.
Obviously, she is more than a dress at the Met Gala and her feud with Elon Musk. Ocasio-Cortez talks about hearts and minds and not flipping seats. But, unfortunately, she has paid for it.
Who can forget when she stood on the U.S. Capitol steps and Representative Ted Yoho, angry at the congresswoman’s comments that linked crime with poverty, stuck his finger in her face and called her “crazy” and “disgusting.”
However, in true Ocasio-Cortez fashion, she fired back with a fierce speech from the House floor.
“I been spoken to disrespectfully, particularly by members of the Republican party and elected officials in the Republican Party, not just here, but the President of the United States last year told me to ‘go home to another country,’ with the implication that I don’t even belong in America,” she said.
Watch this space; Ocasio-Cortez is not done yet.
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