Senate Leader Mitch McConnell reprimanded Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez in an interview with Fox News Channel Thursday after AOC suggested McConnell was waiting for a Senate Democrat to die to regain control of the chamber.
The Kentucky Republican said AOC’s “big complaint is with her own party.”
“The agenda of the particular member of Congress you refer to is not in the middle,” he said. “I don’t think she’d be able to sell her agenda to their own party, let alone have an attraction to it on my part.”
Senate Leader Mitch McConnell, who was imprisoned on the Senate subway on Thursday, reprimanded Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez after she said he ‘fled’.[ning] off the clock’ for a senate Democrat to die to take back the room
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez on Wednesday proposed to Senate Democrats to drop bipartisan negotiations and pass bills while in majority
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez tweeted Wednesday afternoon that Democrats were “burning precious time” by trying to negotiate with Senate Republicans
Ocasio-Cortez on Wednesday proposed to Senate Democrats to drop the bipartisan negotiations and pass bills — either through reconciliation or by revising filibuster rules — while remaining in the majority.
“During the Obama admin, people thought we would have a 60 Dem majority for a while. It took four months,” the New York Democrat tweeted. “Dems are negotiating precious time and impact with GOP who won’t even vote for a Jan 6 committee.”
“McConnell’s plan is to clear the clock. It’s crowded. We have to move now,” she said.
Ocasio-Cortez referred to the death of Senator Ted Kennedy, a Massachusetts Democrat, who died in August 2009, seven months after Obama took office.
Kennedy’s seat was won in January, in a special election, by Republican Senator Scott Brown, killing the filibuster-resistant majority of Democrats by 60 votes.
The oldest members of the Senate include Democrats, including Senator Dianne Feinstein, who turns 88 this month, 81-year-old Senator Patrick Leahy and 79-year-old Senator Bernie Sanders.
The Democrats currently have 50 votes in the Senate and a tiebreaker with Vice President Kamala Harris.
Breaking a filibuster, however, costs 60 votes.
McConnell said the only way the AOC-backed legislation would be passed would be if the Democrats were close to having a supermajority.
“Well, to please that particular member of Congress, I think the Democrats should have 60 votes in the Senate and they should all be as left-wing as they are,” he said.
Fox News’ Bill Hemmer didn’t ask McConnell directly about the dig, but asked if he believed the filibuster was safe.
“Well, I think a significant number of Democrats have indicated that we’re not going to change the Senate rules to advance a radical leftist agenda that the American people didn’t vote for,” McConnell replied.
“So if you have a 50/50 Senate, I think you should look for things you can agree on,” the Republican leader continued. “And as I mentioned earlier, so far this year we’ve taken on six major bills on a bipartisan basis, working together and meeting in the middle.”
McConnell used the filibuster for the first time this Congress to make sure a bill that constituted a 9/11-style commission for the January 6th Capitol attack was not passed.
Other House bills that are stuck in the Senate include voting rights bills, the pro-LGBTQ ‘Equality Act’ bill, gun control legislation and the George Floyd Police Reform Act.
President Joe Biden’s infrastructure plan – which is not included in the House – is also held up by bipartisan negotiations.
Earlier Wednesday, AOC urged Biden and the Senate Democrats to “set the planet on fire” if they continued to “play patties” with the GOP by removing climate proposals from the $1 trillion infrastructure plan.
The New York Democrat shared a tweet from Sen. Martin Heinrich, a Democrat from New Mexico, who warned, “An infrastructure package that goes light on climate and clean energy cannot count on every Democratic vote.”
“Yeah,” AOC said, adding, “Mitch McConnell and the Koch brothers aren’t worth setting the planet on fire for.”
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez sent two tweets away, agreeing with Senator Martin Heinrich that an infrastructure package that “goes light on climate and green energy” proposals won’t draw every Democratic vote
AOC also tweeted on Wednesday that President Joe Biden and Senate Democrats should assess whether it is worth playing with GOP senators as they have threatened to block voting rights legislation and want a narrower infrastructure bill.
“I know some Dems may not agree with me, but that’s my unpopular opinion of the day,” continued Ocasio-Cortez.
She also rejected the Biden government’s continued pursuit of duality.
‘Pres. Biden & Senate Democrats should step back and ask themselves if playing patty cake w GOP Senators is really worth dismantling people’s voting rights, setting fire to the planet, granting huge corporations and the rich stand not to pay their fair share of taxes, etc,” Ocasio-Cortez wrote.
AOC joined a chorus of progressives in Congress who warned Biden that not every Democratic vote can be guaranteed.
Heinrich had linked to the interview of Politico with Biden’s national climate adviser Gina McCarthy headlined, “In the infrastructure plan, some climate proposals could be left out.”
AOC urged President Joe Biden to act unilaterally and waive student loans for Americans
sen. Brian Schatz, a Democrat from Hawaii, shared the same interview on Twitter.
“Just a kind, gentle reminder that the executive doesn’t write the bills,” Schatz said.
More moderate Colorado Senator Michael Bennet also suggested he could delay his vote if climate change proposals are dropped.
Colorado and New Mexico share a turning point. I totally agree with my friend [Sen. Martin Heinrich],” Bennett tweeted.
AOC has made climate change one of its key concerns by rolling out a ‘Green New Deal’ proposal during her first weeks in office in 2019.
On Wednesday, she also encouraged Biden to take unilateral action against student loan forgiveness.
“In addition, the Senate blockades make Biden’s reluctance to act on student loan debt — something he can do *without* Congress but hasn’t done yet — all the more striking,” AOC tweeted. #CancelStudentDebt is one of the few, rare opportunities Biden has to make it big without the Senate. He has to take it.’