Why AOC Nominated Bernie Sanders In Her 90-Second DNC Speech

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Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez made a bold stand for the progressive wing of the Democratic Party tonight as she seconded the nomination of Sen. Bernie Sanders at the Democratic National Convention (DNC). And, she somehow managed to cram the entire progressive agenda into 90 seconds.
While the nomination was symbolic, it gave AOC an opportunity to warn the Democratic establishment that the progressive wing remains as determined as ever to realize policies like Medicare for All and the Green New Deal — and is only getting started. Although she only had around a minute-and-a-half to make her case, she movingly represented the progressive platform in the short time she was allotted.
“In fidelity and gratitude to a mass people's movement...striving to recognize and repair the wounds of racial injustice, colonization, misogyny, and homophobia, and to propose and build reimagined systems of immigration and foreign policy,” she said.
“In a time when millions of people in the United States are looking for deep systemic solutions to our crises of massive evictions, unemployment, and lack of healthcare...and out of love for all people, I hereby second the nomination of Senator Bernard Sanders of Vermont for president of the United States of America.”
Some people on Twitter were confused by the process of the nomination, even going so far as to attack AOC for not supporting Biden. But the Congresswoman was doing her job: She had the formal role of nominating Sanders at the convention. She cleared it up herself, writing, "If you were confused, no worries! Convention rules require roll call & nominations for every candidate that passes the delegate threshold. I was asked to 2nd the nom for Sen. Sanders for roll call."
In her short speech, Ocasio-Cortez spoke for a rising generation of Democrats, the majority of whom chose Sanders in the primary elections. Unlike other speakers who praised Biden or attacked Trump, AOC mentioned neither politician. Instead, her focus was solely on the people and the movement.
When it was reported that AOC would only have one minute to speak at the convention — the length of a TikTok — many progressives and young people were angered, knowing that multiple Republicans got considerably more time. (The speech was originally rumored to be 60 seconds, but ended up being 90 seconds long.)
The Young Delegates Coalition had circulated a petition calling for AOC to receive a keynote speaking position, or at least equal time to Ohio Republican Gov. John Kasich, who spoke Monday, calling on Democrats to “demonstrate respect for her and the constituencies she represents.”
Despite our rising political power, the DNC's lineup and priorities show a refusal to invest in young, progressive voices. Only two of the 35 convention speakers will be under the age of 40: AOC and Pete Buttigieg. The Young Delegates Coalition estimated that the average age of this year’s speakers is 62. Latinx politicians are also underrepresented, even though Latinx voters are on track to be the largest non-white voting group in the 2020 election. 2020 presidential candidate Julián Castro will not speak at the DNC, against many peoples’ hopes.
“AOC having only 60 seconds to speak at the DNC demonstrates how Latina, progressive, and youth voices in this country are severely undervalued and silenced,” 17-year-old Shania Hurtado Valbuena, an activist from Houston, told Refinery29.

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