Calm Down. AOC’s Bernie Endorsement Was Purely Symbolic and She Fully Supports Biden.

But the misunderstanding, fueled by the media’s lack of context, is already getting weaponized.

In the 60 seconds Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) spoke at the Democratic National Convention on Tuesday, she stuck to a largely familiar script calling for systemic change in American politics. Even for the incredibly popular and charismatic first-term congresswoman, the appearance wasn’t exactly headline-making stuff.

Until it was. Within moments of her remarks, outrage exploded on social media, with comments like, “Did she really just do this? WTF.” Another tweet chided, “Bad, bad move. She just lost me as a follower and supporter.” At issue was Ocasio-Cortez’s endorsement of Bernie Sanders, a purely symbolic move that honors convention rules stating that candidates who meet a threshold of delegates receive a formal “nomination” during the DNC. It most certainly was not, as some on Twitter and several news outlets charged, a rogue move to slight the official nominee, Joe Biden. Ocasio-Cortez clarified as much on Twitter.

Ocasio-Cortez was right to call out the egregious mischaracterization; it sparked confusion on the left, as well as an entire conservative news cycle relishing supposed discord among Democrats. The swift and unwarranted suspicion underscores how little faith some have in Ocasio-Cortez despite vowing for months that she’d back Biden if he became the party’s nominee. For her commitment to party unity to get derailed by news outlets who failed to do some pretty basic homework, well, that’s just maddening. That is, of course, if you’re Fox News:

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This is a big one for us. So, as we ask you to consider supporting our team's journalism, we thought we'd slow down and check in about where Mother Jones is and where we're going after the chaotic last several years. This comparatively slow moment is also an urgent one for Mother Jones: You can read more in "Slow News Is Good News," and if you're able to, please support our team's hard-hitting journalism and help us reach our big $350,000 goal with a donation today.

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