Earlier this week, socialist and former Bernie Sanders campaign organizer Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez beat out incumbent Rep. Joseph Crowley in an impressive 10-plus point victory. The race was for the 14th district for the House of Representatives in New York.
She had a full-on socialist platform, including socialized medicine, free everything else, and the abolition of ICE (who she believes runs covert “black sites”). Liberals in the media couldn’t impute enough meaning onto the victory; that if a socialist could win an election in Donald Trump’s America, anything is truly possible. In reality, a far-left candidate winning in New York City, one of the most liberal cities in America, against an incumbent that was widely criticized as corrupt, might not say much. Had Cortez won an election in Texas, perhaps there would be a discussion to be had about America’s changing views towards socialism. She didn’t.
But that doesn’t mean socialists can’t do more damage to our country than they already have.
Upon her victory, with her newfound confidence, Cortez alluded to the possibility of running for Speaker of the House if Democrats retook the majority in 2018. Now just days later, she’s upping those ambitions. According to the New York Post, her mother told the Post that she wants to take her career all the way to the White House. “She has been thinking about politics since she was a teenager. She would read historical and political books old and new. She would engage in political discussions passionately.”
Of course, we’ve already seen at least one Presidential candidate in recent memory run with a platform similar to Cortez; Bernie Sanders, whom she volunteered for. One estimate of the Sanders platform concluded that his government programs would add an additional $20 trillion to the national debt (above current deficit projections), and it’s doubtful Cortez (or a mathematician) could make the math work either.
In fact, she was incomprehensible when trying to explain how she’d fund her agenda on MSNBC. Asked on whether or not tax hikes could fund her agenda, Cortez said “Not only that, but also to understand that the federal government does have the ability in the similar way that we had in the New Deal to spearhead this agenda and some of that financing as well.”
What exactly does that mean? Who knows, but these “spend now, think later” kind of policies are growing increasingly popular among the Left. Hilariously, despite their love of government spending, establishment Democrats aren’t quite on board with Cortez either. Nancy Pelosi was recently asked twice about Cortez at a press conference, and she brushed off both questions. After the second, she asked if anyone had a substantive question.
.@NancyPelosi: "Does anybody have a substantive question?"
— CSPAN (@cspan) June 28, 2018
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Democrats are in a “damned if you do, damned if you don’t” position here.
Every establishment Democrat (including Hillary Clinton) knew during the 2016 election that the policies of Bernie Sanders were completely unworkable, and unaffordable. But Bernie was overwhelmingly more popular among younger leftist voters than Hillary was.
So what are Democrats to do? Back socialists like Cortez that can only win elections in far-left districts that they’ll inevitably bankrupt? Or back candidates that are at least somewhat rooted in reality, and alienate their younger base? I don’t know what the solution is – and I’m glad I’m not the political strategist tasked with figuring it out.
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