In a recent “60 Minutes” interview, Speaker of the House Rep. Nancy Pelosi tried to put down Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and her allies by claiming that they make up fewer than half a dozen people. However, her dig spectacularly backfired when the interview pointed out to her that the progressive Democrat representatives in Congress number far more than five people.
Rep. Pelosi’s embarrassing gaffe led liberal icon Michael Moore to state that Rep. Pelosi’s “tired, privileged ways” were over and call for her to leave Congress and put leadership in the hands of newcomers.
The truth is that Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is a member of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, a group of nearly 100 House representatives. When this fact was pointed out, Pelosi claimed to be progressive as well. It was an odd assertion given the fact that the Speaker clearly doesn’t like these people very much.
Speaker Pelosi has mocked the Green New Deal, calling it the “Green New Dream” and patronizingly stated that it was one of many ways that the Democrat Party might try to help protect the environment. It is also no secret that Pelosi is far more interested in saving the Affordable Care Act than replacing it with Medicare for All.
It’s obvious that there is no love lost between the Speaker of the House and AOC. In recent comments to the press, Pelosi dismissively told reporters that it is far more important to have votes on the House floor than Twitter followers. It was an obvious dig at Rep. Ocasio-Cortez, who to date has nearly four million followers on Twitter.
The dismissive comment on Rep. Ocasio-Cortez and her supporters was intended to make it clear to voters that the Democratic Party is united with only a few exceptions. However, the truth is that Pelosi has made the divisions in the party far more apparent than they were before.
First of all, her comments have insulted the progressive base. Second, it gives rise to the suspicion that the Speaker doesn’t really have control over freshmen Representatives in her own party — she doesn’t even know who all of them are. Third, the 60 Minutes interview has made it clear that senior Democrat politicians still don’t have a positive view of the progressive wing of the party. While numerous Democrat presidential candidates are embracing progressive causes such as the Green New Deal, free public college tuition and Medicare for all, Democratic Party stalwarts like Pelosi aren’t interested in changing the status quo too much.
It is no secret that the Democratic Party is extremely divided, and likely to become even more so as Sen. Sanders continues to rise in the polls. Even so, Pelosi’s recent interview has done even more damage. While many progressive talking points are outlandish, unrealistic and potentially devastating for the United States should they ever become law, the fact remains that Rep. Ocasio-Cortez and her allies number more than just five people.
There are nearly 100 Democrat House representatives who officially identify as being progressive. Additionally, a growing number of Democratic senators are embracing progressive causes in the hopes of earning extra votes from far-left voters. The truth is that the progressive wing of the party is not going away — but growing.
~ Liberty Planet