Appearing on VICE’s Seat at the Table with Anand Giridharadas, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) urged Americans not to return to work after states begin reopening their respective economies in response to updated information on the Chinese coronavirus pandemic.
“We talk about this idea of ‘reopening society.’ Only in America does [President Trump] — when the president tweets about liberation, does he mean ‘go back to work,'” Ocasio-Cortez said. “When we have this discussion about going back or reopening, I think a lot of people should just say, ‘No, we’re not going back to that. We’re not going back to working 70 hour weeks just so that we can put food on the table and not even feel any sort of semblance of security in our lives.'”
Ocasio-Cortez’s call to action comes as several states are preparing to partially reopen their economies, with southern states such as Texas, Georgia, Tennessee, and South Carolina leading the charge. Additionally, Colorado Gov. Jared Polis (D) has announced his state’s “stay-at-home” order will be downgraded to a “safer-at-home’” mandate that allows certain businesses to reopen Friday.
Ocasio-Cortez’s remarks also come after a controversy where she appeared to cheer record-low oil prices, touting the crash as an opportunity to invest in “green infrastructure to save our planet.”
“You absolutely love to see it,” the freshman congresswoman said in response a tweet about oil prices. “This along with record low interest rates means it’s the right time for a worker-led, mass investment in green infrastructure to save our planet.”
Shortly after, Ocasio-Cortez removed the post and replaced it with a more somber tone, stating the crash is a “snapshot” of a “turning point” for the global warming movement.