The State of the Union: A Conversation with Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

In a recent interview on “State of the Union,” New York Democratic Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez shared her views on various pressing issues in American politics. The interview covered topics such as the government shutdown, the future of the Republican Party, fiscal responsibility, and recent incidents involving her colleagues in Congress. Let’s delve into the key points discussed in the conversation.

Government Shutdown and Speaker McCarthy

The interview began with a discussion about the government shutdown. Ocasio-Cortez expressed her disappointment in the Republican Party’s handling of the situation, highlighting their inability to reach an agreement until the last minute. She criticized Speaker Kevin McCarthy for his leadership, characterizing him as a weak speaker who had lost control of his caucus.

Voting on Speaker McCarthy

When asked about her stance on voting to vacate Speaker McCarthy, Ocasio-Cortez made it clear that she would cast her vote in favor of removing him from his position. She emphasized that it was up to the Republican Conference to determine its leadership, and Democrats would not intervene to save Republicans from their internal problems.

Power Sharing and Progressive Agenda

Regarding power-sharing agreements, Ocasio-Cortez mentioned that discussions within the Democratic caucus would determine their final stance. She stressed that supporting a Republican Speaker of the House should come at a price, with a focus on advancing progressive policies such as raising the minimum wage and controlling prescription drug prices.

Fiscal Responsibility and Taxing the Rich

The conversation shifted to fiscal responsibility, where Ocasio-Cortez firmly asserted that progressivism was not incompatible with fiscal responsibility. She advocated for making strategic investments, particularly in education, to boost the economy and generate higher revenues. She also pointed out the need to tax the wealthy and address income inequality.

Balancing the Budget

Addressing the issue of reducing the deficit and balancing the budget, Ocasio-Cortez acknowledged the importance of fiscal responsibility but argued that it should go hand in hand with taxing the rich and ensuring that corporations pay their fair share of taxes.

Incident Involving Congressman Jamaal Bowman

The interview touched on an incident involving Congressman Jamaal Bowman, who accidentally pulled a fire alarm during a vote. Ocasio-Cortez defended Bowman, explaining that there was a misunderstanding due to the unusual circumstances of a government shutdown and locked exits.

Republican Handling of Ethics Violations

Ocasio-Cortez criticized the Republican Party for taking swift action to censure or expel members over minor incidents while protecting members facing serious ethics violations. She pointed out that this inconsistency raised questions about the Republican caucus’s values and priorities.


In this interview, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez shared her perspective on various critical issues in American politics, from government shutdowns to fiscal responsibility and ethics in Congress. Her viewpoints shed light on the ongoing debates within the Democratic Party and the broader political landscape in the United States.

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