Actually, AOC's Endorsement of Bernie Sanders Didn't Have to Happen and It's a Sign of Desperation

AOC AP featured image
In this image from video, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y. (AOC), speaks during the second night of the Democratic National Convention on Tuesday, Aug. 18, 2020. (Democratic National Convention via AP)

The news around New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez endorsing Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders for President during the Democratic National Committee Convention has been a roller coaster.

At first, it seemed like there was trouble in paradise and AOC decided to go rogue and endorse Sanders, whom she campaigned for while he was still in his fight against then-presumptive nominee Joe Biden. AOC had been somewhat tossed into the tertiary column as they only gave her a very limited amount of time to speak, a whopping two minutes.

The general take was that AOC wasn’t supposed to do that, and even mainstream media outlets seemed a bit taken aback by the move and reported it as the New York Rep. making a bold statement against the establishment. As my colleague Bonchie reported, in truth, the DNC asked her to do so and even forewarned the media that this would be happening so there was no confusion. The media quickly fell back in line and issued apologies and corrections, which wasn’t good enough for AOC.

Only, both the DNC and AOC are misleading the public. The way AOC went about it revealed far more than we think. As Tommy Christopher highlighted, nothing was stopping AOC from endorsing Sanders in the same way Dolores Huerta did for Hillary Clinton when she was running against Barack Obama. Nothing was stopping AOC from ignoring Biden, but she did anyway.


Furthermore, the DNC didn’t even have to give Sanders a fighting chance or award him any delegates. Sanders could have done the same thing Clinton did in 2008 and suspend the roll call, effectively removing himself as an option in order to push forward with Biden unopposed by acclamation.

The move by Democrats to have AOC endorse Sanders, and indeed some of the other delegates from other states, was actually smart even though it reveals a major gap in the Democrats’ armor. The DNC and Sanders have a very tumultuous history and Sanders has lost a second time to the Democrat establishment. This move was to make the entire process of rejecting Sanders look legitimate yet supportive at the same time.

It allows those Sanders supporters who felt cheated to once again come back into the Democrat party’s fold and utilize their votes for Biden.


It’s smart, but it’s also desperate.

It’s clear that the enthusiasm for the Democratic party is at an all-time low. At this point, the Democrats are scraping the bottom of the barrel for support, and Sanders voters picking up their toys and going home will not help their cause at all. They need them.

If they thought they had the same enthusiasm as they did from 2016, they may have done away with this show altogether. Sanders probably wouldn’t have gotten any of the votes or endorsements that he did, but this is 2020 and they need all hands on deck to beat President Donald Trump.

The show of unity is, very likely, a show of desperation when the mask is pulled off.


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