Republican lawmakers and right-leaning pundits have been taking swings at Rep. Alexandria Osacio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) and the Green New Deal ever since she revealed the plan for the climate change resolution earlier this year. But the congresswoman recently argued that many critics are missing the point.
“I think it is interesting,” she said Thursday on “Late Night With Seth Meyers” in response to the criticism. “It’s always good to see how these narratives are manipulated, because they’re trying to say that the Green New Deal is about what we have to give up, what we have to cut back on, when, in fact, the Green New Deal itself is a resolution to be more expansive.”
Conservatives jumped on Ocasio-Cortez’s early mention of “farting cows” as contributing to climate change (cows produce methane which is a greenhouse gas) and her suggestion that people could cut back on their animal product intake.
Liberty University president Jerry Falwell Jr. joked during a panel at this year’s Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) with Donald Trump Jr. that he would shoot the congresswoman if she tried to take his cows, as IJR Blue noted.
Watch the video below:
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) March 1, 2019
Ocasio-Cortez, however, explained that the components of the Green New Deal are much broader than that.
“It is to be able to generate more and to make sure that we’re investing in working-class Americans so that we all can afford to have more in life,” she said. “So an affordable apartment isn’t a dream, but a norm and that healthcare is a right, not a privilege.
“Honestly, the only reason I think anyone would have to cut back on ice cream is if their doctor advised them to.”
Watch her interview below:
The New York congresswoman also pointed out that the Green New Deal isn’t legislation.
“It is a House resolution. It is a declaration. It is an intentional vision document,” Ocasio-Cortez explained.
“And what it does is that it puts forward the large scope, the overall vision of what we’re trying to accomplish, and to say, listen, if we’re going to make progress, we need to declare our North Star and our North Star is 100 percent renewable energy, it’s Medicare for All, it’s tuition-free public colleges, it’s investing in technology and renewable — renewable resources and electric vehicles. And — and as a result, any legislation, any actual bills that do follow from that are pieces of that.”
Despite conservative pushback, the Green New Deal has been popular amongst liberals since its arrival and some 2020 Democratic presidential candidates have made supporting the deal — or some version of it — as part of their campaign platform.