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Ocasio-Cortez Has New ‘D*mn’ Message For Those Mocking Her For ‘Bootstrap’ Comment
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) speaks during a campaign event with Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) at La Poste January 26, 2020 in Perry, Iowa. A New York Times/Siena College poll conducted January 20-23 places Sanders at the top of a long list of Democrats seeking the presidential nomination with 25-percent of likely Iowa caucus-goers naming him as their first choice. Candidates former South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg, former Vice President Joe Biden and Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) are polling at 18, 17 and 15-percent, respectively. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Democratic socialist Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) is not ready to let go of her self-created “bootstrap” controversy just yet. After inspiring a flood of criticism and mockery online when she engaged in her own “you didn’t build that” moment during a congressional hearing last Thursday — attempting to debunk the rags-to-riches American ideal by approaching the famous metaphor literally — the far-left freshman congresswoman revived the issue in a post Sunday. Republicans hitting her with “‘bootstrap’ jokes” just weren’t paying enough “attention” to the debate, she said.

“For GOPers who spent this week mocking the poor [with] ‘bootstrap’ jokes, why don’t you listen to Ms. Hutchinson’s testimony [and] give one damn reason why we shouldn’t have an accurate poverty line in this country,” an incensed Ocasio-Cortez tweeted. “Unless of course you were talking [without] paying [attention] to the actual hearing.”

The Democrat, who is one of the most vocal supporters of fellow democratic socialist Sen. Bernie Sanders’ (I-VT) presidential campaign, linked to a video of a testimony from a single mom who told Congress, “I’ve pulled myself up by the bootstraps so many damn times that I ripped them off.”

The “bootstrap” buzz started last Thursday when Ocasio-Cortez brought up the century-old saying to defend her left-wing economic agenda.

“I also want to thank you about bringing up the poverty draft and this idea of a bootstrap,” she said. “You know, this idea and this metaphor of a bootstrap started off as a joke because it’s a physical impossibility to lift yourself up by a bootstrap — by your shoelaces? It’s physically impossible. The whole thing is a joke.”

As noted by the Washington Examiner, it wasn’t the first time Ocasio-Cortez had disparaged the notion of being self-made in America. “Ah yes, of course, it’s classic Republican ‘bootstrap’ meritocracy: where the smartest, hardest-working, most fitting person for the job just so happens to be your son-in-law,” she said back in 2018.

As The Daily Wire noted, the democratic socialist’s comment is “an echo” of then-President Obama’s famous “you didn’t build that” remark during the 2012 election. “If you’ve got a business, you didn’t build that,” he said. “Somebody else made that happen.”

Met with blowback, Ocasio-Cortez posted a series of defenses of her literal complaint about the metaphorical statement. First, she cited Martin Luther King Jr., who referenced the saying in a comment about racial inequality. “I see that the right is worked up that we pointed out the myth of bootstrapping when 60% of the wealth in this country is *inherited.* But hey, if you think I’m hopelessly dumb, try listening to MLK talk about “bootstrapping” & the racial wealth gap, too,” she tweeted along with a video of King (posts below).

She then attempted to elaborate on her premise that no one is self-made in America, specifically citing those who serve in the military and businesses that get tax breaks: “What does ‘bootstrapping’ mean to the GOP? That you didn’t go to public school? That you didn’t enlist in the military, which is funded by the gov? That you never got a tax break for starting a business or buying a home? That your parents never used food assistance to feed you?”

“Question for the GOP: Does starting a business with a 60 million dollar loan from your dad count as ‘bootstrapping?'” she asked in another post. “Does getting a $2 trillion dollar corporate handout from the GOP count as ‘bootstrapping?’ Asking for a corrupt president & his friends.”

Ocasio-Cortez then cited her own rags-to-riches story as supposed evidence that Americans don’t elevate their economic status by willpower, hard work and talent because she received some help from others along the way. “I worked my butt off to get elected against all odds, without any special connections or money,” she tweeted in a follow-up post. “I worked double shifts and wore through my shoes, outspent 10:1 to get elected. Even [with] all that hard work, it would be narcissistic to pretend I ‘bootstrapped’ it alone [and without] others.”

Ocasio-Cortez’s role as one of the more prominent Sanders’ supporters has kept her in the news even more than usual as of late. Over the weekend, she also stirred up some blowback online when she, an economics major, conflated two economists with very different theories on the field.

“It’s funny that you ask this because I was just reading today about how Milton Keynes, a famous economist back in the day, predicted that by 2030, US GDP would grow six to eight times what it is, which would allow for everyday people to work 15 hours a week,” she said. In a follow-up social media post, Ocasio-Cortez declared, “UGGGH TYPO. It’s John Maynard Keynes. Mixed his name with Milton Friedman — a (very) different economist.”

Like the “bootstrap” comment, her “Milton Keynes” conflation was met with criticism, including from Johns Hopkins Applied Economics Prof. Steve Hanke, who tweeted in response, “[Ocasio-Cortez] reveals the meaningless of an economics degree today. Her embrace of [socialism] has her so confused that she mixes up [Friedman] & [Keynes]. As [Friedrich Hayek] said: ‘If socialists understood economics they wouldn’t be socialists.'”

Related: Trump Makes Series Of Election Predictions For Democrats: Ocasio-Cortez, Schumer, Nadler

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The Daily Wire   >  Read   >  Ocasio-Cortez Has New ‘D*mn’ Message For Those Mocking Her For ‘Bootstrap’ Comment