Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Just Had the Perfect Response to People Who Think She’s a “Pretty Idiot”

In an interview with The New Yorker, she also called President Trump “a small, mediocre person.”

Dan Herrick/ZUMA Wire

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Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) doesn’t mince words. In an interview published Sunday in The New Yorker, the 29-year-old congresswoman took aim at her critics, whose attacks, she says, are rising to the level of “ravenous hysteria.” 

What has made her such a target, she argues, is that she is “as powerful as a man and it drives them crazy.”

Here’s the key exchange between Ocasio-Cortez and The New Yorker editor David Remnick:

Ocasio-Cortez, who is six years short of eligibility for the Presidency, will surely be a focal point of Trump’s tantrums.

Why? Well, first of all, she comes from New York, but not Trump’s New York. She grew up without great privilege. She is a person of color. And she is a woman. And, “In politics,” as Ashley Reese wrote for Jezebel, “women are often either characterized as hideous harpies like Hillary Clinton or pretty idiots whose ‘craziness’ is bound up with their sex appeal…To her critics, Ocasio-Cortez is firmly in the pretty idiot category.”

When I read that to Ocasio-Cortez, she could only agree. “I feel like I predicted it from day one,” she told me. “The idea that a woman can be as powerful as a man is something that our society can’t deal with. But I am as powerful as a man and it drives them crazy.”

Was that the case with Trump? I asked.

“I can see Trump being enormously upset that a twenty-nine-year-old Latina, who is the daughter of a domestic worker, is helping to build the case to get his financial records. I think that adds insult to injury to him.”

Those were not Ocasio-Cortez’s only harsh words for the president:

“He is such a small, mediocre person,” she told me. “I grew up with a real romanticism about America. I grew up in a first-generation household where your parents give up everything, and for me America was the greatest thing ever to exist. To be there on the floor of the House was beyond anything my parents would have ever dreamed of. But the person behind the podium was so unskilled. It was kind of sad.”

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THE TRUTH...

is the first thing despots go after. An unwavering commitment to it is probably what draws you to Mother Jones' journalism. And as we're seeing in the US and the world around, authoritarians seek to poison the discourse and the way we relate to each other because they can't stand people coming together around a shared sense of the truth—it's a huge threat to them.

Which is also a pretty great way to describe Mother Jones' mission: People coming together around the truth to hold power accountable.

And right now, we need to raise about $400,000 from our online readers over the next two months to hit our annual goal and make good on that mission. Read more about the information war we find ourselves in and how people-powered, independent reporting can and must rise to the challenge—and please support our team's truth-telling journalism with a donation if you can right now.

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