Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez responded to former Republican Rep. Bob Inglis’ contention that her movement is the “mirror image” of President Donald Trump’s by drawing what she considered several key differences, one of which included calling the Tea Party a movement grounded in “xenophobia” and “the underpinnings of white supremacy.”
The back-and-forth came during Ocasio-Cortez’s Friday night MSNBC town hall, hosted by Chris Hayes.
“I think we’ve seen the formation of a Tea Party to the left,” Inglis said, responding to Hayes’ question about how best to sell the Green New Deal to different political factions. “The Tea Party to the right that tossed me out 10 years ago and went into this decade of disastrous dispensation, I think we’re at risk of that happening now on the left. Because last night, Donald Trump was in Michigan. There was a crowd that was really cheering for him.”
“They were also chanting ‘AOC sucks’ at one point,” Hayes noted.
“What’s the difference between last night and tonight?” Inglis asked. “This is the mirror image. This is the flip side.”
Ocasio-Cortez acknowledged the boos from the audience before relating what she considered key differences.
So here’s what I think. What I think is that we’re committed to policies that make American lives better and we’re actually talking about something substantive. We’re not calling anyone names. People say ‘Tea Party of the left.’ And I find this phrase very interesting. This phrasing very interesting because the grounding of the Tea Party was xenophobia, the underpinnings of white supremacy.
The New York congresswoman said she understood “politically” why “people say Tea Party to the left” because she ousted a powerful Democratic Party member as a progressive Democrat. However, she contended, former Rep. Joe Crowley “was not representing” his progressive district.” (RELATED: Ocasio-Cortez Bemoans Number Of Males And ‘Very Few People Of Color’ In Dem Group Opposing Pelosi)
“So this is not a Tea Party of the left,” she said. “This is a return to American representative democracy. And here’s a really big difference. The Koch brothers funded the Tea Party and everyday people funded my campaign.”