If all she had said here was that her numbers are lopsided because righty media covers her more than lefty media does, that’d be fair enough. I made that point myself yesterday in writing about the new Quinnipiac poll. The amount of coverage she’s gotten on Fox News is astonishing. Go figure that a pol who gets more coverage from opposition news outlets than from her own is going to end up net negative in favorability.
But she’s saying a lot more than that, isn’t she? And not for the first time.
It’s almost as though there is a directed + concerted far-right propaganda machine with a whole cable news channel, and a dark-money internet operation propped up by the Mercers et al dedicated to maligning me & stoking nat’l division, reported on by @JaneMayerNYer or something https://t.co/HChBp04c8W
— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) March 29, 2019
Ten days ago she was more explicit, tweeting this in response to a Siena poll of New Yorkers that showed her underwater there too:
When “centrists” care more about the GOP base than the Dem base, bigotry gets legitimized.
This is *the* playbook. GOP does it w/ virtually every Dem figure who isn’t a white male: otherize, demonize + splinter.
It’s vital that we adapt & dismantle this approach, not cow to it. https://t.co/dKlzflqZVn
— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) March 18, 2019
In neither tweet is there a whiff that mundane partisanship might explain Republican antipathy to her. Ocasio-Cortez isn’t just far left, she’s a social-media phenomenon who proposed as her first piece of legislation a bill that would remake America’s consumption of energy from top to bottom at the cost of $93 trillion. She wants your attention. And because she does, despite her personal “relatability” she was destined to be despised by the right and right-leaning independents and to be viewed with apprehension by left-leaning independents and centrist Democrats. If those opinions calcified sooner rather than later, it may have more to do with her dropping a legislative atomic bomb like the Green New Deal on day one and going to bat for Ilhan Omar on anti-semitism than with Tucker Carlson grumbling about her on Fox sporadically.
But what we’re learning about AOC is that she simply doesn’t regard criticism of her as legitimate. Righties can’t dislike her because, go figure, they oppose progressivism; they dislike her because they’re brainwashed by a “far-right propaganda machine.” She’s being “demonized” and “otherized” not because she embodies fears of a socialist future but because she’s a Democrat who isn’t a white male, quite in contrast to the kid-gloves treatment Bill Clinton has traditionally received from Republicans. John noticed her habit of smearing her critics when she tweeted after the Siena poll:
Could it be that people are simply put off by AOC’s aggressive, extreme approach to issues? Is it possible that some of the criticism coming her way is about her proposals and views and not about racism and sexism?
For instance, maybe people are genuinely bothered by the fact that she can’t explain how she would pay for very expensive agenda or the fact that her attempts to explain it have been failures. Maybe people are put off by her attacks on capitalism. Maybe it was the fact that she bad-mouthed the Amazon deal without understanding how it would have worked? Maybe it’s her dishonest attacks on critics or claims she’s being harassed or her threats to use her position to silence them? Maybe Democrats didn’t like her threat to put moderates on a list? Maybe some didn’t like her attack on prayer after a shooting at two mosques. I can tell you one thing it was probably not about: her dancing. No one cared about her dancing.
Read his post for links supporting all of those points. She’s petulant, pugnacious, demagogic, and seemingly incapable of believing that any decent person might object to her in good faith.
Thank God Republicans would never elect someone like that.
Here’s the mystery: Is her inability to handle criticism a personal thing or an ideological thing? Because the sense one gets from AOC is that she thinks socialism’s moment has arrived, that America writ large is positively clamoring for it, and that therefore only crooked reactionary forces stand between it and total victory. That is, it may not be that her ego is so yuuuuge that it can’t stand not to be validated; it may be that her faith in progressivism is so blind and so total that she honestly can’t process how someone who’s so outspoken on its behalf might be unpopular. And so she resorts to viciousness and chicanery for an explanation — propaganda and racism and “dark money.”
She hasn’t tweeted about this yet today as of 2:15 ET but stay tuned. I can hardly wait.