It appears that Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) probably ought to prepare for a primary challenge in 2022 from Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY).
Breitbart reports that Ocasio-Cortez in a recent interview refused to say that she would not try to primary Schumer in the next election.
Dodging the question, again
On Monday, Punchbowl News published an interview that it recently conducted with Ocasio-Cortez. There she was asked directly by John Bresnahan whether she would consider running against Schumer in 2022.
“I’m a no bull**** kind of person,” Ocasio-Cortez replied. “I’m not playing coy or anything like that.”
Ocasio-Cortez continued: “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.”
Since Ocasio-Cortez refused to answer directly the question of whether she would challenge Schumer, Bresnahan decided to give her the opportunity to answer the question indirectly. Accordingly, he asked her whether she thought Schumer is doing a good job.
“It’s a hard thing to say too,” Ocasio-Cortez replied. “We’ve had to deal with a fascist president and Mitch McConnell.”
AOC is clearly keeping her options open
Ocasio-Cortez has been willing to criticize Democratic leadership. In fact, she did so just recently during an interview with The Intercept, saying, “Well, you know, I do think that we need new leadership in the Democratic Party.” She even said that she thinks Schumer and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) need to go.
Ocasio-Cortez, however, has stopped short of saying that she personally is looking to replace them. The boldest statement she has made in this regard is that “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.”
From this, many have inferred that Ocasio-Cortez is simply keeping her options open. But, what Ocasio-Cortez’s nonanswer have done is keep the rumor mill going.
Accordingly, there has been much speculation about what chance Ocasio-Cortez would have against Schumer. President Donald Trump, for example, has tweeted, “I think AOC will run against Schumer and I think she’ll kick his ass!” New York’s Democrat Party Chairman Jay Jacobs, however, recently warned Ocasio-Cortez not to challenge Schumer, saying that she would “absolutely” lose to him.
Be that as it may, there is clearly a struggle going on in the Democratic party between establishment types, like Schumer, and the new progressives, like Ocasio-Cortez. And, there is little doubt that, if the opportunity presents itself, one group will look to get rid of the other. If not in 2022, then maybe the next go around.