AOC lashes out at Democratic party over lack of support: ‘I didn’t even know if I would run for re-election’

Progressive congresswoman issues scathing assessment of her own party, less than 24 hours after Joe Biden is declared president-elect

Louise Hall
Monday 09 November 2020 05:32
Comments
AOC says she considered not running for re-election over Democratic Party divisions

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has said that she might quit politics if Democrats continue to be “hostile” towards progressive causes.

In an interview with The New York Times, shortly after president-elect Joe Biden was declared the winner of the 2020 election, AOC admitted that she wasn’t even initially sure if she was going to run for reelection this year.

“I genuinely don’t know. I don’t even know if I want to be in politics,” she told the newspaper.

“You know, for real, in the first six months of my term, I didn’t even know if I was going to run for re-election this year.”

When asked why she he cited “stress”, “violence” and “lack of support from your own party” as among her reasons.

Ms Ocasio-Cortez was re-elected to her New York congressional seat by a large margin this week, early results showed.

The progressive congresswoman has become a rising star in the party and stands as an advocate for a universal single payer healthcare system and the Green New Deal.

She criticised Democrats for refusing to embrace progressive causes and signposted the emerging rift between the progressive and moderate ends of the party for her increasing disillusion with the party.

Read more: Follow 2020 US election results live

“Externally, there’s been a ton of support, but internally, it’s been extremely hostile to anything that even smells progressive,” she said.

On Saturday, the congresswoman gave congratulations to Mr Biden and vice president-elect Kamala Harris before swiftly criticising the Democrats' poor showing in races down the ticket.

The party had higher hopes heading into the 2020 election but instead lost seats in the House and are in a two-seat run-off battle for control of the Senate.

“I chose to run for re-election because I felt like I had to prove that this is real. That this movement was real. That I wasn’t a fluke,” Rep Ocasio-Cortez said of her eventual decision to run.

“That people really want guaranteed health care and that people really want the Democratic Party to fight for them.”

Many have speculated that Rep Ocasio-Cortez could  be a possible candidate for a presidential bid in the future, although the 31-year-old has previously said that she is “not a person who aspires to a position” but a “mission”.

“I’m serious when I tell people the odds of me running for higher office and the odds of me just going off trying to start a homestead somewhere — they’re probably the same,” she concluded in her interview with The New York Times.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in