‘Structural Racism’: AOC Slams Infrastructure Deal Because The Senators Who Negotiated It Aren’t Minorities
Senate Majority Leader Schumer And Representative Ocasio-Cortez Hold Press Conference Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a Democrat from New York, speaks during a news conference in the Bronx borough of New York, U.S., on Thursday, June 3, 2021. The news conference was held to urge Congress to provide nearly $400,000 to Jacobi Hospital's youth violence reduction program - Stand Up to Violence. Photographer: Jeenah Moon/Bloomberg via Getty Images Bloomberg / Contributor via Getty Images
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Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) slammed the new bipartisan infrastructure bill because the Senators who negotiated it are not racial minorities.

“The diversity of this ‘bipartisan coalition’ pretty perfectly conveys which communities get centered and which get left behind when leaders prioritize bipartisan dealmaking over inclusive lawmaking (which prioritizes delivering the most impact possible for the most people),” tweeted the thirty-one-year-old lawmaker on Thursday afternoon.

“This is why a bipartisan pkg alone isn’t acceptable,” she continued. “The exclusion & denial of our communities is what DC bipartisan deals require. That’s how you get GOP on board: don’t do much/any for the working class & low income,or women, or poc communities, or unions, etc. We must do more.”

Ocasio-Cortez said that bipartisan deals hinge upon neglecting disadvantaged groups: “For many communities, their not having a seat at the table is a precondition for bipartisan deals to work in the 1st place. & that’s not only seen as normal, but valued.”

“Meanwhile, when representatives of excluded communities object to the exclusion & marginalization required to make many bipartisan deals work, they’re dismissed as ‘unreasonable,’” she alleged. “So who/what often benefits from this type of bipartisan dealmaking? Corporations & structural racism.”

“‘Isn’t something better than nothing’ assumes that none of the individuals involved agreed to harmful policies. A huge assumption,” the lawmaker concluded.

On Thursday, President Biden was joined at the White House by Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ), Sen. Mitt Romney (R-UT), Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV), and other lawmakers to unveil a $1.2 trillion “Bipartisan Infrastructure Framework.” Twenty-one Senators — eleven Republicans and ten Democrats — have reportedly backed the deal so far.

Soon after the White House unveiled its $2.7 trillion American Jobs Plan in March, negotiations proved to be unfruitful in the Senate. Center-leaning Republican lawmakers proposed a $928 billion plan last month that emphasized physical infrastructure rather than new federal education and healthcare programs.

Other progressive lawmakers also expressed disappointment with the Bipartisan Infrastructure Framework.

“I’ve said all along: no climate, no deal,” tweeted Sen. Ed Markey (D-MA). “The bipartisan framework doesn’t get us there. So I agree with our leadership that this must be resolved in reconciliation. Until then, I’m still no climate, no deal — let’s get this done.”

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