‘They let anybody who the cat dragged in call themselves a progressive. There’s no standard…’
Ocasio–Cortez, a self-proclaimed Democratic socialist who has endorsed Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., for president, told New York magazine that she and Biden share little in common when it comes to policy goals.
“Oh, God. In any other country, Joe Biden and I would not be in the same party, but in America, we are,” she explained.
Ocasio–Cortez and other members of ‘The Squad‘ have sought to use hyperbole and polemic—by proposing extremist measures such as the outlandish Green New Deal and the People’s Justice Guarantee—to drive the party to the fringes.
Many of the ideas they borrow have come directly from the International Communist Party and other pro-Marxist organizations.
They hope, by comparison, to normalize once-radical liberals, making them appear more moderate and centrist within the mainstream of political thought.
But “AOC” has taken it a step farther by complaining that even her own party-members are too right-wing.
The Democratic Party caters too much to the moderates and centrists, she said, specifically referencing the vulnerable Democratic representatives in swing districts Trump won in 2016.
Ocasio–Cortez then compared herself to the conservative Tea Party, suggesting that the popular grassroots uprising in response to Obama’s abuses of power had driven conservatives to the Right.
“For so long, when I first got in, people were like, ‘Oh, are you going to be basically a Tea Party of the Left?’ And what people don’t realize is that there is a Tea Party of the Left, but it’s on the Right edges, the most conservative parts of the Democratic Party,” she claimed, without evidence.
It’s still taboo to criticize the Democratic Party, she said, but there are a growing number of young representatives willing to speak up.
“I think I have created more room for dissent, and we’re learning to stretch our wings a little bit on the Left,” she said.
Ocasio–Cortez also complained that the Congressional Progressive Caucus, which is made up of some of the Democratic Party’s more extreme members, is not selective enough.
“They let anybody who the cat dragged in call themselves a progressive. There’s no standard,” she said.
Ironically, the freshman Democrat frequently claims to be above party politics. She has blasted other Democratic candidates for accepting big money donations, but even she cashed a check from billionaire Tom Steyer when she ran for Congress in 2018.
Still, Ocasio–Cortez continues to push for Democratic “purity tests” while also trying to downplay her own radicalism.
“For anyone who accuses us for instituting purity tests—it’s called having values,” she said at a Bernie Sanders rally. “It’s called giving a damn. It’s called having standards for your conduct to not be funded by billionaires but to be funded by the people.”
Liberty Headlines’ Ben Sellers contributed to this report.