In an interview with New York Magazine, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) (popularly known as AOC), the extreme-left congresswoman, criticized President Joe Biden for his failure to approve the Build Back Better agenda, blaming his failure on his fondness for an earlier era of politics where deals could be made over a glass of cigars and bourbon.
“I have the utmost respect and confidence in the president, but I just felt like we called two different plays on this one,” AOC said. “I think that there is a sense among more senior members of Congress, who have been around in different political times, that we can get back to this time of buddy-buddy and backslapping… I think there's a real nostalgia and belief that that time still exists or that we can get back to that.”
AOC opposed the infrastructure bill Joe Biden signed into law and believed it should have been merged with the unsuccessful Build Back Better initiative to ensure that the supporters of the bill couldn't divide their votes.
With the 2022 midterm elections just around the corner and Republicans set to win back needed seats within the House, AOC said that Democrats must lean towards the extreme left of the progressive base to stand a chance of keeping Republicans from taking over the House. A summary of her thoughts: “It is important to recognize that this isn't only all about the middle, or an ever-narrower group that includes independents. This is actually about the decline in the support of young people within the Democratic base and those who believe that they've worked hard to help elect this president and don't feel that they are being seen.”
AOC advised that Biden begin implementing legislation from the executive branch by putting out executive orders to fight the effects of climate change, reduce healthcare costs and cancel student-loan debt–all of which are likely to be subject to Supreme Court challenges in the same way that his (failed) vaccination mandate was challenged.
“If the president does pursue and start to govern decisively using executive action and other tools at his disposal, I think we're in the game,” she added. “But if we decide to just kind of sit back for the rest of the year and not change people's lives–yeah, I do think we're in trouble.
“So, I don't think that it's set in stone. I think that we can determine our destiny here,” she explained.