Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) is starting her term in Congress telling it like it is.
Ocasio-Cortez sat down in an interview with Anderson Cooper on “60 Minutes” Sunday night, which has gone viral because of her answer to one question “Do you believe President Trump is a racist”
Her response: “Yeah. Yeah. No question.”
“When you look at the words that he uses, which are historic dog whistles of white supremacy, when you look at how he reacted to the Charlottesville incident, where neo-Nazis murdered a woman, versus how he manufactures crises like immigrants seeking legal refuge on our borders, it’s night and day,” Ocasio-Cortez said.
She called Trump “a symptom of a problem.”
“The president certainly didn’t invent racism,” Ocasio-Cortez said, “But he’s certainly given a voice to it and expanded it and created a platform for those things.”
At age 29, she is the youngest woman elected to Congress. Ocasio-Cortez has over 1 million Twitter followers, as many as the other 60 Democratic freshman House members combined. Her progressive and no-holds-barred approach rattles conservatives and even some House Democrats who don’t want to rock the boat.
In a statement, the White House combatted Ocasio-Cortez’s comments on Trump.
“Sheer ignorance on the matter can’t cover the fact that President Trump supported and passed historic criminal justice reform,” adding that he also “repeatedly condemned racism and bigotry in all forms.”
In the interview, the topic of Trump came up as Ocasio-Cortez was reflecting on her being given four Pinocchios for a misleading tweet on the Pentagon’s financial practices. She turned the table and took the opportunity to contrast how she handles mistakes as opposed to the man who vacates 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.
“Whenever I make a mistake, I say, ‘Okay, this was clumsy,’ and then I restate what my point was,” she said. “But it’s not the same thing as the president lying about immigrants. It’s not the same thing at all.”
When Cooper asked why she doesn’t talk about the President often, she stated, “Because I think he’s a symptom of a problem.” After Cooper pressed her to explain, she added, “The president certainly didn’t invent racism, but he’s certainly given a voice to it, and expanded it, and created a platform for those things.”
It was then that he asked her if she thinks the President is racist to which the newly minted congresswoman responded authoritatively with the four-word answer that has made this “60 Minutes” interview an internet sensation.
When Cooper followed up with, “How can you say that” Ocasio-Cortez responded with, “When you look at the words that he uses, which are historic dog whistles of white supremacy, when you look at how he reacted to the Charlottesville incident where neo-Nazis murdered a woman versus how he manufactures crises, like immigrants seeking legal refuge on our borders, it’s night and day.”
Cooper is under fire for pushing back at Ocasio-Cortez. Some recalled that just about a year ago Cooper slammed the president for calling Central America “s—hole countries.” In reference to Trump at the time, Cooper said “Not racial. Not radically charged. Racist. Let’s not pretend or dance around it.”
Others supported the veteran journalist stating he was simply doing his job. “He’s not there to agree with Ocasio-Cortez, even if deep inside he does agree with her,” one person tweeted. “He wants to find out why she thinks Trump is racist, even though he might already know the answer.”