New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez said liberals like herself “likely can push” Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden “in a more progressive direction” if he is elected in November.
As a self-described socialist, Ocasio-Cortez’s remarks come after reports that Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders reportedly has said he does not believe Biden is appealing enough to liberal voters. Ocasio-Cortez endorsed and campaigned with Sanders during the primaries.
"I think, overall, we can likely push Vice President Biden in a more progressive direction across policy issues," Ocasio-Cortez told Just the News on Tuesday.
"I think foreign policy is an enormous area where we can improve; immigration is another one. There are some areas where we just fundamentally disagree, but that's OK. I think it's important to acknowledge that we can have, in some cases, very large disagreements — it doesn't mean that we're trying to undermine the party or undermine each other.”
Ocasio-Cortez said she agrees with Sanders’ assessment that Biden is not progressive enough.
"Of course I do. We're different people, and clearly I, in the primary, one of the reasons why I was supportive of Sen. Sanders was because of how progressive his stances are,” she said. “But, you know, the primaries are over, and right now what is most important is to make sure that we ensure a Democratic victory in November and that we continue to push Vice President Biden on issues from marijuana to climate change to foreign policy."
Besides foreign policy, immigration and marijuana, Ocasio-Cortez wants to push Biden to a socialized heath care system paid for by the government and eliminating private health insurance.
"That would not just take me to convince him nor any one individual," she said. "We need a mass movement in this country. We need widespread popular support for single payer in order to get a chance at getting it done."
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