Pelosi stepping down 'completely transformed' life for AOC
Nancy Pelosi's (Ca.) resignation from House leadership "completely transformed" life on Capitol Hill for Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (Ny.), according to a new book on her rise to political stardom.
AOC's shock primary victory over Joe Crowley was seen by many as a jolt to the political establishment, and there was plenty of drama to follow.
Things got off to a rough start during the first meeting between Pelosi and AOC's staff.
Pelosi talked the whole time and was dismissive of AOC's calls to abolish Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), writes Ryan Grimm, author of The Squad: AOC and the Hope of a Political Revolution.
Further, AOC recalls being disparaged over the years by Pelosi, who made comments about AOC's age and maturity.
"The amount of times she told me that stupid ‘I have protest signs older than you in my basement’ s---. Like yeah but mine don’t collect dust,” AOC wrote.
Pelosi "got so mad" at AOC when the latter suggested the party should defer to AOC for campaign advice.
"I told her DCCC campaign vendors sucked,” AOC said, “and that it was strange that after I beat Crowley not a single person bothered to ask how I beat him … and how I think we should pay attention and ask questions when that happens, to spot weaknesses. She got so mad at me.”
But it wasn't just Pelosi who dismissed AOC's big plans. The young congresswoman's ego made her a "pariah" among Democrats up and down the ladder, Grimm writes.
But everything suddenly changed when Pelosi relinquished her iron grip on the Speaker's gavel last year.
"I thought things would get worse," Ocasio-Cortez wrote. "I thought a lot of my misery was due to leadership more broadly having a thing against me. But … my life has completely transformed. It's crazy. And it's that that made me realize it was kind of just [Pelosi] the whole time."
"I'm shocked. I couldn't even get floor time before," AOC wrote.
As AOC sees it, Pelosi has been scheming against her all along. But is that what really happened?
What if, instead, AOC's colleagues have simply learned to tolerate her over the years?
In addition, as AOC's critics on the left have observed, she is less radical these days than she once was. In fact, she seems to be thriving in the "Swamp."
Perhaps AOC being welcomed in Washington says more about AOC than it does about Pelosi.
Then again, self-awareness was never AOC's strong suit.