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McConnell Not Shaken By AOC: ‘Her Big Complaint Is With Her Own Party’
Senate GOP Leadership Briefs Press After Policy Luncheon WASHINGTON, DC - MARCH 02: Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) holds a press conference following the Senate GOP policy luncheon in the Rayburn Senate Office Building on Capitol Hill on March 2, 2021 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Samuel Corum/Getty Images) Samuel Corum / Stringer via Getty Images
Photo by Samuel Corum/Getty Images Samuel Corum / Stringer via Getty Images

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) pushed back against Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s (D-NY) comments earlier this week as the senator made the more effective and mature argument for bipartisanship instead of legislative isolation.

On Wednesday, Ocasio-Cortez criticized members of her own party for seeking to work with Republicans.

The New York Congresswoman tweeted, “During the Obama admin, folks thought we’d have a 60 Dem majority for a while. It lasted 4 months. Dems are burning precious time & impact negotiating w/GOP who won’t even vote for a Jan 6 commission. McConnell’s plan is to run out the clock. It’s a hustle. We need to move now.”

In an interview with Fox News, McConnell was asked about the congresswoman’s attacks. Host Bill Hemmer cited another of her tweets, in which she wrote, “Pres. Biden & Senate Dems should take a step back and ask themselves if playing patty-cake w GOP Senators is really worth the dismantling of people’s voting rights, setting the planet on fire, allowing massive corporations and the wealthy to not pay their fair share of taxes, etc[.]”

McConnell chuckled, saying, “Well, to satisfy that particular member of Congress, I think that Democrats would have to have 60 votes in the Senate, and all of them would have to be as far Left as she is. I think her big complaint is with her own party.”

Hemmer read AOC’s tweet pushing back against bipartisanship and asked McConnell about the future of the filibuster.

McConnell responded, saying that “a significant number of Democrats have indicated we’re not going to change the rules of the Senate in order to advance a radical left-wing agenda that the American people didn’t vote for.”

He added, “When you have a 50-50 Senate, I think you need to look for things you can agree on,” saying, “We had six major bills so far this year passed on a bipartisan basis where we worked together and we met in the middle.”

McConnell noted, “The agenda of the particular member of Congress you’re referring to is not in the middle. I don’t think she could sell her agenda to their own party, much less find it any kind of appeal for that on my side.”

McConnell went on to discuss the infrastructure bill, saying, “All we’re [Republicans are] insisting on is that the infrastructure bill be about infrastructure and not a whole lot of other things, and that it be credibly paid for,” he explained, saying that his members are “continuing to engage in discussion” with members across the aisle and the Biden administration.

On Tuesday, President Biden ended discussions with Senator Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV), the leading Republican negotiator. Capito confirmed in a statement, “I spoke with the president this afternoon, and he ended our infrastructure negotiations.”

As The New York Times reported on Tuesday, “[Biden] shifted his focus to a bipartisan group of centrist senators who have been working separately on an alternative, calling three of them personally to cheer on their efforts and encourage them to work with top White House officials to hammer out a deal.”

McConnell said, “We haven’t given up hope that we’ll be able to reach a deal on something really important for the country that we really need to accomplish, and that is a major infrastructure bill,” adding that “it will have to be done on a bipartisan basis.”

McConnell noted that AOC would like the infrastructure bill to be “sort of a green new deal infrastructure package.”

“I don’t think that’s going to fly in the Senate,” he said.

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