On Tuesday night after the fourth Democratic debate, CNN host Jake Tapper announced that Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) would be endorsing Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) in the 2020 Democratic primary. AOC’s allies, Reps. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) and Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.) are also expected to endorse Sanders.
The Washington Post first reported that AOC would endorse Sanders at a rally on Saturday.
The endorsement will come shortly after Sanders recovered from heart surgery and a heart attack, reminding voters that he is 78 years old. AOC should give Bernie’s campaign a boost of energy after those health concerns.
Like Sanders, who pioneered the “democratic socialist” label in American politics with his 2016 run against Hillary Clinton, AOC embraces a modified socialist label and far-left big-government policies. Sanders has endorsed her radical Green New Deal agenda.
As the Post reported, AOC’s endorsement could be a blow to Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), who has emerged as the frontrunner in recent weeks, edging ahead of former Vice President Joe Biden. Warren’s policy-heavy strategy echoes many of Sanders’s radical proposals, including the health care plan Medicare for All.
While Sanders appeared to be waning in recent weeks, this endorsement will likely strengthen his campaign. The “democratic” socialist septuagenarian senator also performed well in the debate Tuesday, showing vigor despite his health problems.
At the moment, Warren, Biden, and Sanders are the top three contenders in the race. With Biden dropping, there may be room for a moderate to emerge and take his place, running against the two radicals.
As for socialism, both Sanders and AOC have dismissed comparisons between their brand of socialism and the socialism that devastated Venezuela, and Sanders has condemned Venezuelan dictator Nicolas Maduro. Yet Ocasio-Cortez now joins the ranks of Maduro in endorsing Bernie Sanders.
The big government socialism Ocasio-Cortez and Sanders support threatens to reverse the free-market, limited government miracle and return to the natural human state of affairs: poverty and tyranny.
Follow Tyler O’Neil, the author of this article, on Twitter at @Tyler2ONeil.