Nearly 70 Democrats have been voting in tandem with Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez despite House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s scoffing that the far-left Democratic wing was only “like five people.”
Pelosi downplayed the influence of the new-wave progressives, particularly Ocasio-Cortez, who pushed the party leftwards, during an interview with CBS News’ Lesley Stahl on “60 Minutes,” saying that despite the noise, the party is still largely centrist and rejects socialism “as an economic system.”
“You have these wings, AOC and her group on one side,” Stahl told Pelosi, to which the 79-year-old replied: “That’s like five people.”
But according to Fox News’ review of voting records using ProPublica data tools, 68 lawmakers voted with Ocasio-Cortez at least 95 percent of the times since January, representing over a fourth of all seats held by Democrats.
The lawmakers voting in tandem with the New York Democrat aren’t just freshman lawmakers, but include a number of other high-profile Democrats.
Presidential candidates Eric Swalwell and Tulsi Gabbard both voted with Ocasio-Cortez 95 percent of the times. Rep. Adam Schiff, the House Intelligence Committee chair, also voted with her 95 percent percent of the time.
Pelosi’s claim that the progressive caucus represents about “five people” appears to be correct only when counting lawmakers who voted 97 percent of the time with the New York Democrat. Those include Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., Rashida Tlaib, D-Mich., Ayanna Pressley, D-Mass., and Donald Payne, D-N.J.
During the CBS interview, Pelosi’s remarks were met with pushback, pointing out that the progressive group has more than five people, to which she responded saying she’s a progressive as well.
She added that congressional Democrats “by and large … know that we have to hold the center, that we have to go down the mainstream,” and said she “reject[s] socialism as an economic system.”
“If people have that view, that’s their view,” she said. “That is not the view of the Democratic Party.”
Pelosi continued taking a swipe at far-left Democrats during her trip to Ireland and the United Kingdom, telling an audience on Monday that both she and Ocasio-Cortez won in districts where “glass of water” with a “D” next to it could win.
“When we won this election, it wasn’t in districts like mine or Alexandria’s,” Pelosi said. “[S]he’s a wonderful member of Congress as I think all of our colleagues will attest. But those are districts that are solidly Democratic.”
To drive the point home she picked up a water glass next to her and said: “This glass of water would win with a ‘D’ next to its name in those districts.”
Story cited here.