Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez on Wednesday accused Speaker Nancy Pelosi of “singling out” newly elected “women of color in Congress.”
The New York Democrat made the comments in a Washington Post interview. She seemed to suggest that the House leader from California was being racist.
“When these comments first started, I kind of thought that she was keeping the progressive flank at more of an arm’s distance in order to protect more moderate members, which I understood,” Ocasio-Cortez said. “But the persistent singling out … it got to a point where it was just outright disrespectful … the explicit singling out of newly elected women of color.”
In a closed-door meeting earlier in the day, Pelosi reportedly scolded progressives for tweeting their grievances with the party and warned them to keep such talk private.
A number of outlets quoted Pelosi, the Democratic leader from California, as saying, “You got a complaint? You come and talk to me about it. But do not tweet about our members and expect us to think that that is just OK.”
How the cold war between Ocasio-Cortez and Pelosi got so hot
Pelosi has repeatedly downplayed the significance of the AOC wing of the Democratic Party. In an interview with The New York Times on Saturday, she chastised Ocasio-Cortez, Pressley and two other progressive freshmen Democrats for last week voting against a $4.6 billion bill for emergency border funding. She said they had made themselves “irrelevant to the process.”
“All these people have their public whatever and their Twitter world,” Pelosi said. “But they didn’t have any following. They’re four people and that’s how many votes they got.”
Ocasio-Cortez quickly fired back on Twitter, saying that by helping to pass the legislation, her fellow Democrats were “blindly” trusting President Donald Trump and bargaining with people’s lives, “& for what?”
Rep. Rashida Tlaib also defended her vote in an ABC interview Wednesday and suggested Pelosi didn’t understand the “no” voters’ “pain” as women of color.
Back in April, Pelosi said during a talk in London that “a glass of water” with “a ‘D’ next to its name” could have won in Ocasio-Cortez’s district or in her own.
In an appearance on ABC’s “60 Minutes” a day earlier, Pelosi denied that the party was “fractured,” dismissing Ocasio-Cortez and crew as “like five people.”
Conservatives grab the popcorn
After the Post reported on Ocasio-Cortez’s allegations against Pelosi on Wednesday, supporters cheered their standard bearer for taking a stand.
Pelosi has yet to publicly respond to Ocasio-Cortez. But as the Democrats gear up to take on President Donald Trump and the Republicans in the 2020 election, she may have difficulty continuing to claim that her party is united.
*see full story by the Pluralist