In an interview with Punchbowl News posted Monday morning, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez refused to rule out a 2022 run against current Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer.
Asked whether she would consider challenging Sen. Schumer, Ocasio-Cortez avoided a direct answer. “I’m a no bullshit kind of person. I’m not playing coy or anything like that,” she told John Bresnahan. She did, however, clarify that she was keeping her options on the table.
“I’m still very much in a place where I’m trying to decide what is the most effective thing I can do to help our Congress, our [political] process, and our country actually address the issues of climate change, health care, wage inequality, etc.,” she told the outlet.
Pressed as to whether she believed Schumer was doing a good job, Ocasio-Cortez again demurred, turning the focus on President Trump and the current Senate Majority Leader. “It’s a hard thing to say, too. We’ve had to deal with a fascist president and Mitch McConnell,” she said.
In an interview with Vanity Fair in December, the progressive left’s darling offered similar sentiments:
I don’t know if I’m really going to be staying in the House forever, or if I do stay in the House, what that would look like. I don’t see myself really staying where I’m at for the rest of my life. I don’t want to aspire to a quote-unquote higher position just for the sake of that title or just for the sake of having a different or higher position.
Ocasio-Cortez has historically not been shy in criticizing her party’s leadership. In November, she blamed Democrat incompetence for the election losses. She told the Times:
There’s a reason Barack Obama built an entire national campaign apparatus outside of the Democratic National Committee. There’s a reason that, when he didn’t activate or continue that, we lost House majorities. Because the party — in and of itself — does not have the core competencies, and no amount of money is going to fix that.
On December 20, the congresswoman spoke to The Intercept’s Jeremy Scahill. On Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer, she said: “Well, you know, I do think that we need new leadership in the Democratic Party.” Asked whether she is ready to say, “Pelosi and Schumer need to go,” Ocasio-Cortez responded, “I mean, I think so.”