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Ocasio-Cortez: Pelosi opposition mostly white men, doesn’t reflect ‘diversity of the party’

November 20, 2018

Rep.-elect Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez dismissed the growing opposition to Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi’s potential House speakership as a group of mostly white men who have no vision and no common value.”

A group of 16 Democrats signed a letter Monday vowing to blocking Mrs. Pelosi from returning to her role as speaker after Democrats reclaimed their majority in the midterm elections. The letter, signed mostly by white men, with the exception of Reps. Kathleen Rice and Linda Sanchez, argues that Democrats won back the House on a “message of change” and that shaking up the party’s leadership would deliver on that message.

Ms. Ocasio-Cortez, who announced on Instagram over the weekend that she would likely back Mrs. Pelosi for speaker, told MSNBC Monday night:

“While I was reading this letter that was kind of a released today, my main concern was that there is no vision, there is no common value, there is no goal that is really articulated in this letter aside from we need to change,” she said. “I do think that we got sent to Congress a mandate to change how government works, to change what government even looks like. But if we are not on the same page about changing the systems and the values and how we’re going to adapt as a party for the future, then what is the point of just changing our party leadership just for the sake of it?”

Ms. Ocasio-Cortez, a self-described democratic socialist, warned that blocking Mrs. Pelosi from becoming speaker could allow for a more conservative Democrat to fill the space.

“If anything, I think that what it does is that it creates a window where we could potentially get more conservative leadership,” she said. “And when you actually look at the signatories, it is not necessarily reflective of the diversity of the party. We have about 16 signatories, 14 of them are male. There are very few people of color in the caucus. There’s very few ideological diversity. It’s not like there are progressives that are signing on. It’s not like you have a broad-based coalition.

“I’m not totally bought into the concept,” she added.

In an Instagram Live session Monday, Ms. Ocasio-Cortez said she would support Mrs. Pelosi for speaker as the “most progressive candidate that’s leading the party” right now.

“I would like to see new, younger leadership, but I don’t want new leadership that’s more conservative,” she said, Talking Points Memo reported.

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