AOC Refuses to Back Pelosi for House Speaker
Ocasio-Cortez won't say whether she'll support Democrat leader
Radical-left Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) is refusing to publicly support Democratic leader Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) in her bid to continue as speaker if the Democrats retain their control of the House of Representatives after the election.
On Sunday, 80-year-old Pelosi announced she is seeking to stay on as speaker of the House.
The California congresswoman is looking to cement her hold on the party as it seeks to regain control of the White House and the Senate.
Asked if she plans to run for another term as House speaker if the Democratic Party maintains control, she told CNN in an interview: "Yes, I am."
However, a small but vocal group of Democrats had urged a change in leadership to make way for a younger generation of party leaders.
Ocasio-Cortez, a member of the party's far-left wing who was among a wave of new Democrats who swept into the House in 2018, had pushed for fresh leadership before Democrats coalesced around Pelosi.
Ocasio-Cortez told CNN host Jake Tapper Sunday morning that she plans to support the "most progressive" candidate for House speaker.
AOC revealed that she would consider other Democratic candidates to replace Pelosi's position if the California Democrat doesn't measure up.
"If Speaker Pelosi runs again, as she just indicated she will, if the Democrats keep the House, will you support her?" Tapper asked.
"I want to make sure that we win the House," the freshman congresswoman responded.
"I do believe that we will, but it's critically important that we are supporting Democrats in tight swing races, making sure that not only all of them come back but that we grow our majority."
But, she added, "I believe that we have to see those races as they come, see what candidates are there.
"I am committed to making sure that we have the most progressive candidate there.
"But, if Speaker Pelosi is that most progressive candidate, then I will be supporting her."
Today, Congresswoman @RepAOC and I sat down to discuss working together to meet the needs of our districts and our country, fairness in our economy and diversity in our country. pic.twitter.com/eVp1LS0Gpw— Nancy Pelosi (@SpeakerPelosi) July 26, 2019
Pelosi, who has served in the House for more than 30 years, clashed with Ocasio-Cortez and allied freshmen lawmakers last year over their policy differences -- which span everything from their approach to immigration to their early calls for impeachment against President Trump.
The lawmakers claimed to have reached an understanding after meeting privately in July 2019, and have publicly remained in each other's good graces since.