Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (age 28) defeated long-time stalwart Joseph Crowley in a Democratic primary race that includes parts of the Bronx and Queens. Crowley was considered a potential replacement for Nancy Pelosi, the beleaguered Democratic Leader.
Crowley, who has not been challenged in recent years, decided to ignore the brash young woman’s determined effort to take his seat. The press indicated that Crowley didn’t even attend a debate, choosing to send an aide in his place. This apparently infuriated many of his constituents.
Almost immediately the liberal press picked up this Cinderella story. A relatively unknown entity outside of her neighborhood, an attractive and articulate Hispanic woman, beats a well-connected political hack. It’s a perfect story for a movie script. But I think Hollywood moguls should wait to see whether Ms. Ocasio-Cortez has any staying power and can make a difference.
Votes are so hard-up to make changes that they sometimes vote for very inexperienced candidates. Consider Obama and Trump. Neither man had any substantive government credentials. You get what you pay for. Obama was an ineffectual president who botched health care reform, destroyed America’s reputation abroad and left his political party in shambles. And we all know how Trump, an equally inexperienced politician, is handling the affairs of state.
Why would the voters of a relatively poor section of lower New York State vote for Ms. Ocasio-Cortez? [Note: she is expected to easily defeat her Republican opponent in the election.] Certainly this woman has a promising future. It could not have gotten off to a better start. Or maybe not.
Did anyone who voted for Ms. Ocasio-Cortez read her resume? She’s worked as a bartender, waitress, children’s book publisher and a community activist, Additionally she is a member of the Democratic Socialists of American and supported Bernie Sanders (who is also a socialist). Ms. Ocasio-Cortez’s experiences will do little to help her make wise votes in Congress relating to health care reform, immigration, terrorism, international foreign affairs, nuclear proliferation, etc.
It’s sort of like sending a promising baseball player to the major leagues directly out of high school. In more times than not it’s advisable to give the prospect an opportunity to learn the ropes. So it is with Ms. Ocasio-Cortez. She will receive no important assignments in Congress for an extended period of time. She will likely talk too much in an effort to gain notoriety, which will offend her colleagues who are also hungry to be in front of the cameras. Yet the media will be all over her until the fad wears off. She’s already appeared on Morning Joe.
I wish Ms. Ocasio-Cortez great success. But I believe first going to Harvard Law School and then working for an experienced politician for a few years would have been the preferred track. I would have advise her accordingly if she were my daughter.