In the two short months since having been sworn into Congress as the youngest woman ever, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has already proven time and time again that she is a force to be reckoned with. Conservatives seem perplexed and slightly terrified by the 29-year-old Bronx native, who shrugs off the right-wing’s best attempts at trolling and will throw down with anyone who challenges her.
The latest Republican to learn this lesson the hard way is Wisconsin Rep. Sean Duffy, who during a meeting of the Financial Services Committee on Tuesday dismissed The Green New Deal, of which Ocasio-Cortez is a leading proponent, as being an “elitist” liberal fantasy, despite the fact that many Americans like it.
“The Green New Deal is one that if you are a rich liberal from maybe New York or California it sounds great because you can afford to retrofit your home or build a new home that has a zero emissions, that is energy efficient, affordable, and safe,” Duffy argued.
AOC was naturally having none of this nonsense, and launched into a blistering, two-minute-long take-down of Duffy’s remarks with a breezy, off-the-cuff gusto that should have Republicans quaking in their boots:
“When we talk about the concern for the environment as an elitist concern, one year ago I was waitressing in a taco shop in downtown Manhattan. I just got health insurance for the first time a month ago. This is not an elitist issue. This is a quality of life issue. You want to tell people that their concern and their desire for clean air and clean water is elitist? Tell that to the kids in the South Bronx which are suffering from the highest rates of childhood asthma in the country. Tell that to the families in Flint whose kids, their blood is ascending in lead levels, their brains are damaged for the rest of their lives. Call them elitist. You’re telling them that those kids are trying to get on a plane to Davos? People are dying!”
“We’re here, and people are more concerned about helping oil companies than helping their own families? I don’t think so. I don’t think so. This is about our lives. This is about American lives. And it should not be partisan. Science should not be partisan. We are facing a national crisis, and if we do not ascend to that crisis, if we do not ascend to the levels that we were threatened in the Great Depression, we were threatened in World War II, if we do not ascend to those levels, if we tell the American public that we are more willing to invest and bail out big banks than we are willing to invest in our farmers and our urban families, I don’t know what we’re here doing.”
Video of her remarks quickly went viral when tweeted by Occupy Democrats host Brian Tyler Cohen on Tuesday evening, and by Wednesday morning had seven million views and counting — as you can see her full unedited speech below:
As you can see, others were similarly in awe, pointing out that the episode serves as yet another a reminder as to why AOC is a leading voice of the younger generation:
The GOP can continue to try to dismiss Ocasio-Cortez all they want — but as we’ve learned, elections have consequences.