Recently, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said that a “glass of water would win with a ‘D’ next to its name in” Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s district.
According to the New York Post, however, three Republican candidates in Ocasio-Cortez’s district — possibly with the aid of a mysterious individual with big pockets — could be looking to knock over that glass of water in 2020.
“Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s surging national profile has inspired a trio of Republican opponents from her home district — along with a multimillionaire mystery donor who could help close the gap in her foes’ long-shot race against her,” the Post reported Sunday.
“Just three months after taking office, the Democratic socialist congresswoman’s challengers include an Egyptian American journalist, who has already tossed her hat in the ring, and an NYPD cop-turned-high school civics teacher and conservative talk radio producer, both of whom are seriously exploring a run against her.”
“There’s definitely national energy and money on this race,” Bronx Republican Party Chairman Mike Rendino told the newspaper.
He added that he’s been in touch with the “multimillionaire mystery donor” who’s “worth over $200 million, plus [has] connections to raise money in Manhattan.”
And according to the Post, the moneybags donor is “hell-bent on getting AOC tossed.”
There’s a general consensus among the three challengers that Ocasio-Cortez neglects her district, which encompasses parts of the Bronx and Queens, in favor of seeking a national spotlight.
“She completely ignores the people in this district,” Ruth Papazian, a 61-year-old medical writer, said in an interview with the Post.
“I’ve lived here my whole life. I know the heart and soul of this community,” she said.
The Post noted Papazian lives just blocks away from the apartment her parents lived in after they emigrated to the United States in 1956.
“The people here have scratched and clawed their way into the middle class, and they’re not about to be impoverished with the high taxes it will take to make the Green New Deal and Medicare for all,” Papazian said.
Potential GOP challenger John Cummings, a former NYPD officer and U.S. government teacher at St. Raymond High School for Boys, agreed that Ocasio-Cortez isn’t paying attention to her constitutents.
“She’s only interested in a national platform, and we need local representation,” he said.
A third potential challenger, Rich Valdes, a 40-year-old producer for “The Mark Levin Show,” told the Post the congresswoman’s newly famous “AOC” initials should stand for “ambition over constituents.”
“They’re really, really kind of discouraged at the fact that she was elected on this platform of representing the district because she ran against [former Rep. Joe] Crowley, positing him as being no-show, and she’d turned out to be very much the same way a no-show person,” he said.
While Ocasio-Cortez’s people struck back at the idea that she was an absentee congresswoman, poll numbers indicate she’s more popular in her district than the causes she’s garnered headlines for championing.
“A recent Siena College Poll found that 52 percent of AOC’s constituents view her favorably — but just 33 percent backed her opposition to Amazon establishing a second headquarters in Queens, and 41 percent support her Green New Deal,” the Post reported.
Mind you, recent polls have also shown she’s not doing spectacularly among non-constituents as well, but they’re not the ones voting for her. And that’s also the problem — while she made a great underdog story by knocking off Crowley last summer, her time in Congress over the past few months has been spent transmogrifying herself into a headline-generating factory.
Ocasio-Cortez’s ridiculous Green New Deal got called bold by the media — and when Republicans scoffed at even responding to the plan, she said they had no room to talk because they hadn’t come up with a plan themselves, and “until you do it, I’m the boss.” It’s either her way or the highway, apparently.
She got plaudits from the activist base for killing the Amazon headquarters deal in New York City, only to find out that “(o)nly 12 percent call her hero, while 38 percent label her a villain” in the matter, according to a poll.
Both of those plans would adversely affect those that she serves, particularly the Amazon deal.
Papazian, in particular, is running because of the fact Ocasio-Cortez killed the deal.
“[AOC] chose ideology over paychecks,” she told the Post in a March interview. “People need jobs. We don’t have economic diversity in the outer boroughs.”
We’ll certainly see what transpires. Only Papazian has officially announced she’s running, although she doesn’t have a website or fundraising operation.
The others are still in the exploratory stage. I’d still put money on either the glass of water or Rep. Ocasio-Cortez in 2020, given the leanings of the district.
However, I’ll tell you this much: It’ll be a lot more interesting on election night than it would normally be in that little sliver of Gotham.
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