AOC: Americans Dying from ‘Pre-existing’ Racism, Inequity in Coronavirus Era

Social Security Works / Facebook

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) said at a virtual press conference on Facebook Monday focused on what the left wants to include in the next coronavirus relief legislation that racism and inequality are “pre-existing conditions” that are causing Americans to die.

In her remarks, Ocasio-Cortez said the district she represents in New York is “heavily immigrant” and “overwhelmingly people of color.”

“As we’ve long been saying, these inequities are a pre-existing condition,” Ocasio-Cortez said. “Not having access to health care is why people are dying.”

“Having pre-existing conditions because they have confronted asthma and elevated lead levels that come from environmental racism and concentrating pollution in communities of color and working class communities is why people are dying,” Ocasio-Cortez said.

The event was billed as launching the #PutPeopleFirst campaign to demand legislation designed to save the American economy, which has been shut down for fear of the coronavirus spreading, include a guaranteed income for individuals and families for an extended period of time, universal health care, debt forgiveness and housing guarantees. 

The leftists on the call included Reps. Pramila Jayapal (D-WA), Mark Pocan (D-WI), Rashida Tlaib (D-MI), Ilhan Omar (D-MI), Ayanna Pressley (D-MA), and Leah Greenberg, co-executive director of Indivisible Project; Lorella Praeli, president of Community Change Action; Greisa Martinez Rosas, DACA recipient and deputy executive director of United We Dream; and Reggie Hubbard, Washington, D.C., strategist with MoveOn.

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