Democratic-socialist Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the New York Congressional candidate, was unable to explain her claim of “occupation of Palestine” in a PBS interview, although she graduated in 2011 with a degree in economics and international relations.
Ocasio-Cortez attended and graduated from Boston University just seven years before ousting a sitting 10-term Democrat congressman in this year’s New York Democratic primary election. The Boston Globe cites her Facebook page and the Associated Press in reporting that she earned her degree in economics and international relations in 2011.
Last Friday PBS published Margaret Hoover’s Firing Line interview with Ocasio-Cortez in which the candidate refers to the “occupation of Palestine.” The host challenges her to define what she means when she uses that term and, after a sustained pause and stumbling, she ultimately states, “I am not the expert on geopolitics on this issue” – despite her BU degree in international relations. Ocasio-Cortez goes on to say, despite her lack of expertise, that she is a “firm believer in finding a two-state solution.”
The BU economics degree holder also explains to Hoover, “no holds barred, wild west hyper-capitalism” as meaning “profit at any cost.” She continued, “Capitalism has not always existed in the world and it will not always exist in the world.” She then states that at the founding of America, “When this country started we were not a capitalist, we did not operate on a capitalist economy.”
The host points out that the benefit of capitalism is that “because it creates value, it is the system that unlike all the others, has lifted more people out of poverty over the course of human history than any other system.”
Ocasio-Cortez comes back saying that the things the host brought up are “part of the course of human evolution.” She then asserts, “we’re starting to see that the people who create value in society are not experiencing any portion of the value that they are creating.”
The candidate also addresses her call to abolish ICE (U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement).
She goes on to say that she phone banked for then-candidate Barack Obama in 2008. She states that Obama’s administration came in to “unprecedented obstructionism from the Republican Party” and says this marked the beginning of the Republican Party “putting party over people.” Her critique of America under Obama includes becoming “too corporate-friendly” and she says she doesn’t agree with drone strikes.
Ocasio-Cortez says that when she gets to congress she doesn’t intend to put down her “bull horn” and believes in using pressure from organizing people outside of Congress to influence people inside of Congress. She doesn’t plan to be necessarily “antagonistic,” but a “very fierce and unapologetic voice in Washington.”