Yesterday, House Democrats handed would-be Democrat thought leader and power broker Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez a humiliating loss in her quest for a seat on the House Energy and Commerce Committee.
The Energy and Commerce Committee handles everything from health care to climate change and it would be an ideal vehicle for AOC to use to grandstand while pushing Medicare For All, the $15 minimum wage, and destroying the US economy in creating the “Green New Deal.”
There was one seat up for grabs and AOC and another member of the New York delegation, Kathleen Rice, tossed their whatevers into the ring.
While AOC garnered more signatures on her petition of support than did Rice, things took a nasty turn when the House Democrat Steering and Policy Committee took a secret vote. Rice won by 46-13.
At first blush, it is easy to lay this loss at the feet of Nancy Pelosi. Just a few days ago, AOC was at ground zero of a movement that would have held Pelosi’s reelection to Speaker hostage for concessions on votes (see AOC Openly Calls for Putting Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi Out to Pasture, Calls for “Power Shift”) though she seemed to back off that tactic once it got attention (see AOC Shows She Can Be a Star When Playing in Failure Theater). But Rice, herself, was also a Pelosi critic. And while AOC seems to be viewed as an annoying pimple on Pelosi’s withered ass in terms of the threat she poses to the existing Democrat junta, Rice was feared enough to provoke Pelosi into personally intervening to block her from a seat on the Judiciary Committee only last year. Instead, this looks like a clear case of AOC being viewed as a terrible colleague by a large swath of the House Democrat caucus but they are too fearful of her obese incel white knights and vicious flying monkeys on social media to criticize her publicly. They are also fearful that she will recruit primary challengers as payback.
The panel launched into an intense round of speeches on each candidate, with several Democrats speaking up to lobby against Ocasio-Cortez, a freshman member and social media star who is seen as a political threat by many of the caucus’s moderates for her far-left policies. On the video call, several Democrats called out Ocasio-Cortez’s efforts to help liberal challengers take out their own incumbents, as well as her refusal to pay party campaign dues.
“I’m taking into account who works against other members in primaries and who doesn’t,” Rep. Henry Cuellar (D-Texas) said on the call, according to multiple sources. Cuellar successfully fended off a primary challenge from Jessica Cisneros, who Ocasio-Cortez supported.
As my colleague, Joe Cunningham, wrote this morning, there are troubles bubbling about in the House Democrat Caucus (see Democrats on the Brink of War). They have the barest majority which means that small factions of only four or five members can control the direction of legislation. Pelosi is well past her sell-by date and there is a line forming to fight for party leadership when she finally molders into dirt during a press conference. There are a host of young members in a hurry, like AOC, who don’t play nice with others and aren’t interested in waiting another 40 years for their turn.
This snub to AOC is just the beginning of battle lines being drawn. More fun is on the horizon.