In her short time as a US representative in New York, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has become an undeniable force in politics. The name AOC is perhaps more recognised in politics than half of the Democratic candidates running for president in 2020, despite the fact that the 30-year-old congresswoman was only elected into office in 2018. Ocasio-Cortez, a leading voice in single-payer health care and co-author of the Green New Deal, recently gave her highly coveted endorsement to Bernie Sanders and has been campaigning for him in Iowa and New Hampshire. Needless to say, AOC is a staple in modern politics — or so we thought.
The target to take down AOC has become more and more imminent in recent days, with the current sitting president openly opposing her (on Twitter, and beyond). As a proud democratic socialist, AOC's trolls extend past right-wing conservatives and into her own party, too. Now, ahead of the next election, one woman is challenging to unseat Ocasio-Cortez altogether. Former CNBC anchor Michelle Caruso-Cabrera announced that she will challenge Ocasio-Cortez for her seat in the 14th congressional district of New York.
On Tuesday, Caruso-Cabrera told CNBC that she will make a bid for the Bronx-Queens seat and take down Bernie Sanders' right hand woman in the process. A democrat herself, Caruso-Cabrera still falls considerably to the right of Ocasio-Cortez politically, believing in small government and fiscal conservatism. In fact, she has been an outspoken opponent of big government in her more than 20 years as an anchor, international correspondent, and author of the book, You Know I’m Right: More Prosperity, Less Government.
"I am the daughter and granddaughter of working class Italian and Cuban immigrants," Caruso-Cabrera said in a statement to CNBC. "I am so lucky to have had such a wonderful career and I want everybody to have the opportunity that I've had. That's why I'm running."
Ocasio-Cortez has not said anything publicly about her thoughts on Caruso-Cabrera throwing her hat in the ring for her current position. Likely, because she is not the only one: Eight Republicans and four other Democrats have announced plans to challenge Ocasio-Cortez for the seat this year. Although Ocasio-Cortez has raised more than $3.4 million (£2.6m), two of her Republican incumbents have each raised close to half a million in campaign funds, as of October.
Although the candidate filing deadline isn't until 2nd April, and there are sure to be more bids for AOC's suddenly-coveted seat, Caruso-Cabrera could be a serious contender with heavy media backing. But for now, it sounds like Ocasio-Cortez intends on running the same way that got her the landslide win in 2018. “I always feel like the best way for me to run is to really kick ass at my job,” she told reporters back in November. “I aspire to do it better than anyone who’s tried to hold this seat before.”
The democratic primary for the US Representative seat is scheduled for 23rd June, and the general election is on 3rd November.