Self-described Democratic Socialist Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York is riling up party colleagues for refusing to contribute money to support Democratic House races and instead building her own fundraising network for Left-wing candidates.
As reported by Fox News, Ocasio-Cortez has managed to raise millions and has become a darling of the far Left. What’s more, she’s already putting money into the campaigns of Leftist candidates challenging traditional Democrats in 2020 races.
“Sometimes the question comes: ‘Do you want to be in a majority or do you want to be in the minority?’” Rep. Gregory Meeks, D-N.Y., told Fox News, when asked about her stance. “And do you want to be part of a team?”
A House Democrat aide was not as diplomatic.
“Deadbeat Cortez should pay her bills,” the aide complained, according to Fox News. “She’s always whining about people paying their fair share and here she is leaving her friends with the bill.”
Democrats are complaining that “AOC,” as she is known, has not given any money to the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, or DCCC, whose job it is to help elect Democrats to the House.
According to records obtained by Fox News, Ocasio-Cortez has not paid any of the $250,000 in “dues” to the DCCC.
But this is by design, the network reported. The New York Democrat has said she has issues with the DCCC and as such is withholding money in protest over the party’s failure to back insurgent Left-wing primary candidates like her, in order to protect incumbent Democrats.
“For me personally, I’m not paying D-trip dues,” said Ocasio-Cortez, using slang for the DCCC and citing a “myriad of reasons.”
“One, I don’t agree with the policy around blacklisting groups that help progressive candidates,” she said, referring to a DCCC effort to sideline vendors who assist challengers to members of Congress, Fox News reported. “I think we need to evolve as a party and make room for that.”
As such, Ocasio-Cortez is building her own donor base with the help of socialist Sen. Bernie Sanders, a leading candidate for the Democratic presidential nomination this year. She has officially endorsed Sanders’ candidacy and he has said she would have a major role in his administration if he wins.
“I want to help frontline members by putting that money straight into their pocket,” Ocasio-Cortez said. According to Fox News, she has funneled more than $300,000 to candidates she’s endorsed by hosting online fundraising campaigns for them.
One Leftist candidate who has received $35,000 from AOC’s fundraising efforts is Jessica Cisneros, who is trying to defeat Rep. Henry Cuellar, D-Texas.
“Certainly, these are new times,” Cuellar said of his colleague’s effort to oust him, “which is something that we certainly don’t agree with.”
He said the party’s goal should be to defeat Republicans, not each other.
“To have people try to purify the caucus because they don’t agree with them – 100 percent, I certainly don’t agree with that.”
“Hopefully, we will start to get away from this circular firing squad,” said Cuellar, who paid all his dues to the DCCC, records show, Fox News reported.