OPINION: Ocasio-Cortez And Trump Have More Similarities Than Meet The Eye

Renae Cowley | Utah Government Relations Specialist

Does New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez really think the world is going to end in 12 years if the U.S. government does not implement her Green New Deal? Come on.

This is a tactic.

Ocasio-Cortez is the young, female, minority version of Trump for the liberal left. Their online messaging tactics are unrivaled, the media can’t keep up with their speed, and both of their anarchist antics have stirred up sleeping giants of support within their respective bases. Here’s why:

Joe and Jane American are fed up with a do-nothing Congress, business-as-usual status quo.

“Drain the swamp” has become an effective rallying cry because a majority of Americans agree that the system is broken and politicians are to blame. To fix it requires electing fast-moving shake-up specialists to course correct our nation.

No matter who voters send to Washington, they always seem to catch “Potomac Fever” and become a part of the problem. We’ve been sending outsiders to “fix” Washington since Reagan. We’re told to trust the system, and the system is designed to change slowly.

It’s one reason many political pundits missed predicting the 2016 election and why they continually fail to understand why Ocasio-Cortez has captured the imagination of the Left despite her idiotic reasoning devoid of logic.

Recently, the young Democratic Socialist has been criticized for “attacking” her own party, but what many reporters see as “wet behind the ears naïveté,” is clearly an intentional and deliberate tactic, supported by her progressive base.

Rep. Emanuel Cleaver told Politico, “There’s almost an outstanding rule: Don’t attack your own people,” but that is precisely what Ocasio-Cortez and Trump’s bases wants them to do.

They weren’t elected to join the fold; they were elected to question — if not outright destroy — authority. They were elected to push back against the establishment and end the tired, ineffective methods of career politicians.

Trump, Ocasio-Cortez, and many of her incoming freshman class are unapologetic in their differences with mainstream traditionalists and refuse to tow the party line. They are demonstrating an unwillingness to go along to get along, rejecting the notion that they must keep their head down and put in their time as a loyal soldier in the hopes of one day working their way up the political ladder.

Trump’s recent move to furlough Speaker Pelosi by canceling her multinational trip at taxpayers’ expense was an artful move that had voters across the country gleefully cheering to see the establishment get a dose of their own medicine.

An avowed Democratic Socialist, Ocasio-Cortez has sparked a debate about the future and ideals of the Democratic Party that many Democrats would rather not have to answer to in a public forum. Establishment Republicans aren’t likely to be sympathetic. They have been facing the same issue for years, scrambling to respond to every late-night tweet coming out of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.

Trump and Ocasio Cortez’s Twitter antics are probably not as jarring to my fellow millennials as it might be for older generations. Taking to Twitter to put someone, even a multinational corporation that ripped us off, on blast is a national past time for my generation.

Voters want results, and in a reality TV culture, shock-and-awe politics isn’t going away anytime soon.

Ocasio-Cortez and Trump are not the cause of what political pundits are citing as an all-time low in political civility. “Lack of civil discourse” is actually a thinly veiled criticism of disruptionist tactics and is, in fact, code for: “I don’t like that you are speaking your mind, and I especially don’t like that you are doing it in 280 characters or less.”

Gone are the days when elite party insiders can control the narrative. Today, we’re talking climate change; yesterday, a 70-percent tax, leaving NATO, abolishing the Federal Reserve, and building a wall — all because two revolutionaries tell us that these are the topics of the day.

Sifting through the crazy, voters have latched onto some of these important subjects, even if they are equal parts Onion article and CNN headline. Trump has borrowed themes from blue-dog democrats, social conservatives, and moderates and spun them together in a way that appeals to a significant number of Americans.

Conversely, Ocasio-Cortez has developed her policy platforms by coupling extreme leftist fiction with a penchant for attention-seeking lunacy. Climate change is our WWII? Really?

Clearly, we shouldn’t condone public official slinging insults, engaging in derogatory name-calling, vulgarity or personal attacks. We also shouldn’t discount any politician who passionately represents their constituents, even if we don’t align with them ideologically.

But voters’ appetite for the direct challenging of incumbent interests has been wildly underestimated.

Disruptionist tactics may not result in good governance, but the American people have spoken and are ready for a shakeup in D.C.’s house of cards. Voters aren’t looking for a fix; they want to euthanize the crippling tactics that have resulted in ballooning debt, rising healthcare costs and printing money to keep up with Social Security deficits.

Wildfires clear dead foliage and provide nourishment for new growth. A recession balances the economic tides and keeps inflation in check. Neither political faction is advocating to burn down the White House, Revolutionary-War style, but they do want to extinguish the say-one-thing-on-the-campaign-trail-and-do-another-once-elected nonsense that we’ve seen for generations.

Our system of government was created to encourage and facilitate compromise. Disruptionists will not be the architects of great, lasting policy — rather, they will set the stage for a new class of future leaders who will enact meaningful policies to truly Make America Great Again.

Renae Cowley is a government relations specialist in Utah. She earned an undergraduate degree from Utah State University and an MBA from Texas A&M Commerce.


The views and opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and do not reflect the official position of The Daily Caller.

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