Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, or AOC, has been a member of the U.S. House of Representatives from New York’s 14th district since January of 2019. Her campaign and election were historical. At the age of 29, she is the youngest woman ever to become a member of Congress.
In June of 2018, AOC drew national attention when she beat ten-term incumbent Congressman Joe Crowley in the primary elections. This came as a shock to many who doubted her.
Time Magazine said AOC’s win over Crowley was “the biggest upset of the 2018 election so far.” Other news outlets followed in Time’s footsteps with similar statements about her win.
She won the general election against the Republican nominee Anthony Pappas in November of 2018 with 78 percent of the vote. Her win was just one of the large wave of younger and minorities who were elected into Congress. This included Ilhan Omar, Jared Polis, Rashida Tlaib and Deb Haaland, to name a few.
Photo from AOC’s Instagram with her fellow freshman congresswomen.
The freshman Congresswoman is fearless when it comes to standing up for the marginalized groups in America. In an Oversight Committee hearing from February, AOC stood up to Walter Shaub, a senior advisor, by questioning if Congress is being held to a higher standard, ethically in comparison to President Donald J. Trump. This jab at the president highlights how she, and many others, believe he is not being held to a high standard in terms of accountability and honesty when it comes to his office and administration.
AOC also spoke out about the cannabis industry in the United States and the disproportionate “racial wealth gap” that has come with the legalization of marijuana.
She asked if the industry is“representative of the communities that have historically [borne] the greatest brunt of injustice based on the prohibition of marijuana.” during a meeting with Congress, last month.
Speaking up for people who have historically been ignored, such as women and people of color, makes AOC not only a boss but a crusader for equality.
Unlike others in Congress, she is a millennial and she uses that to her advantage. Her Instagram and Twitter feeds are not only personable with funny videos and selfies, but also issues she feels are important and wants to bring awareness to. Pay inequality, the government shutdown that happened earlier this year and climate change are just a few of many issues AOC showcases on her social media.
She tweeted, “A Girl Has No Name: Headlines from the Political Patriarchy” as a comeback to some journalists not addressing her by her name.
Activism and policy go hand in hand when it comes to AOC. Success has been in her back pocket recently, as she recently won in the midterm elections. However, her journey to get to the nation’s capital has been far from easy.
AOC graduated Cum Laude from Boston University in 2011 where she majored in international relations and economics. A few years prior to graduating from college, her father died of lung cancer. And after she graduated, she moved back home to help her mother pay bills while she worked as a waitress.
AOC stays above the fray when it seems like so many organizations and news outlets are always scrutinizing her. From an article about her boyfriend from Fox News, to her financial standings, she has been at the center of gossip, rather than what she is working toward in Congress.
As a member of the Democratic Socialists of America, she believes that working people should run the economy and society in a way that meets human needs. This should not be for large profits involving career politicians and big companies. AOC’s grassroots efforts have shown how dedicated she is to the working-class people and individuals who have been marginalized.
Even though AOC is from the Bronx and grew up in a Puerto Rican household, her beliefs aren’t traditional. She supports gay rights, climate change, eliminating the wage gap, civil rights and more, which makes her a boss and inspiration to everyone.
AOC is a force to be reckoned with and many are excited to see what she is going to do. A young minority woman is kicking ass and taking names, and we are here for it!