Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) accused the United States of using “non-democratic means” to determine the leadership of Venezuela, a charge echoed by the authoritarian states backing Nicolas Maduro’s socialist regime.
Ocasio-Cortez did not elaborate on what “non-democratic” methods she believed the U.S. government to be using.
On Wednesday, the Trump administration recognized Juan Guaidó, the president of the Venezuelan National Assembly, as the interim president of Venezuela. The Trump administration did in support of a constitutional provision in Venezuela that was designed to counteract potential tyranny, as Breitbart News’ national security editor Frances Martel explained (original links):
The National Assembly leader assumed the presidency of the country through the authority vested in Articles 333 and 350 of the constitution of Venezuela. Article 333 requires all Venezuelan citizens to “assume the duty of collaborating to reestablish the constitutional order,” while Article 350 requires Venezuelan citizens to not recognize as legitimate any “regime, legislation, or authority that defies the values, principles, and democratic guarantees [in the constitution], or that violates human rights.”
After the U.S., many other countries followed suit, including Canada — governed by Liberal Justin Trudeau, a darling of the American left — as well as several other Latin American countries, with a few notable exceptions. Iran, the Hezbollah terrorist group, the Palestinian Authority, Cuba, Russia, and other authoritarian regimes denounced the U.S. and stood behind Maduro.
Ocasio-Cortez, a “democratic socialist,” told the conservative Daily Caller on Thursday: “I think that, you know, the humanitarian crisis [in Venezuela] is extremely concerning but, you know, when we use non-Democratic means to determine leadership, that’s also concerning, as well.” She added: “So, we’re figuring out our response and making sure that we center the people of Venezuela first and foremost.”
Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN), a close ally of Ocasio-Cortez through the left-wing “Justice Democrats,” was widely mocked on Thursday for denouncing what she called the “US backed coup” in Venezuela, claiming that the opposition was “far right.”
A US backed coup in Venezuela is not a solution to the dire issues they face. Trump’s efforts to install a far right opposition will only incite violence and further destabilize the region. We must support Mexico, Uruguay & the Vatican’s efforts to facilitate a peaceful dialogue.
— Ilhan Omar (@IlhanMN) January 25, 2019
Guaidó is a socialist, and his party belongs to the Socialist International.
In a statement, socialist Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) was more forthright, condemning Maduro’s destruction of Venezuela’s democracy and economy. Still, he objected to U.S. policy as “regime change,” ignoring Venezuela’s own constitutional process.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. He is also the co-author of How Trump Won: The Inside Story of a Revolution, which is available from Regnery. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.