CNN recently traveled to Pennsylvania to ask Democrats what they thought about socialist Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), and learned that she was not liked.
Airing during a segment on CNN’s “Erin Burnett OutFront,” CNN national correspondent Jason Carroll traveled to Lucerne County, where voters called her “ridiculous” and “bizarre.”
Former Pennsylvania governor and national Democratic chairman Ed Rendell told CNN that Ocasio-Cortez puts Democrats in serious jeopardy of losing in 2020.
“I think, all of a sudden, the 2020 election went from a slam dunk for Democrats to something we’re going to have trouble beating this guy because he’s going to make Democratic socialism swing to the left,” Rendell said. “AOC does not speak for the Democratic Party.”
A recent Gallup poll found that her “unfavorable” rating has more than doubled her “favorable” rating since September 2018.
Full transcript provided via CNN:
JASON CARROLL, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Here in Lucerne County, voters say Democrats lost this rural area of northeastern Pennsylvania during 2016 presidential election because the party forgot people like Eileen and Richard Sorokas.
EILEEN SOROKAS, SWITCHED FROM OBAMA TO TRUMP: This is all from Obama’s campaign.
CARROLL: This county flipped like they did from supporting Barack Obama to supporting Donald Trump.
E. SOROKAS: He wants that border wall, which I’m for, you know?
CARROLL (on camera): You’re for that wall?
E. SOROKAS: Yes.
CARROLL (voice-over): The Sorokas say they identify as moderate who have no regrets leaving the Democratic Party, and for now no desire to go back, because they say they have real issues with its emerging leaders, namely New York Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, AOC for short.
Ocasio-Cortez is a self-described Democratic socialist who’s gained national attention for a number of issues, including the Green New Deal, a sweeping proposal to combat climate change by eliminating most carbon dioxide emissions in the United States by 2030.
E. SOROKAS: I think she’s too bizarre.
CARROLL (on camera): Too bizarre?
E. SOROKAS: Yes, I think she’s more ridiculous and be more realistic, you know? We are people, we live on this planet, we want to survive.
RICHARD SOROKAS, SWITCHED FROM OBAMA TO TRUMP: They want to get all these environment projects done in ten years and it’s impossible. You lose jobs and lose wages.
CARROLL (voice-over): More concerns about the party from voters like Paul Visoky.
PAUL VISOKY, VOTED FOR TRUMP: They’re more liberal. They’re attempting to be socialists.
CARROLL: There are plenty of countries across the country like Lucerne that went from blue to red during the last presidential election. Trump won Michigan, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania by less than 80,000 votes.
Former Pennsylvania governor and national Democratic chairman Ed Rendell says that his party hopes to win back white working class voters, Democrats need to look towards the center, not the far left, which he says plays right into the hands of President Trump.
ED RENDELL (D), FORMER GOVERNOR OF PENNSYLVANIA: I think, all of a sudden, the 2020 election went from a slam dunk for Democrats to something we’re going to have trouble beating this guy because he’s going to make Democratic socialism swing to the left, which I don’t think is real, but he’s going to make it into an issue. AOC does not speak for the Democratic Party.
CARROLL: Ocasio-Cortez is clearly on the minds of voters here in Lucerne, who have concerns about her influence on 2020 hopefuls. Voters we spoke to say not one in the current crop would inspire them to switch to the Democratic Party. [19:45:07] Keyword, current.
(on camera): Do you see anyone out there on the landscape that might —
VISOKY: The only one on the Democrats side — the only one right now would be Biden. People like him.
CARROLL (voice-over): Former Vice President Joe Biden, a Pennsylvania native, still popular here. Many waiting to see if he sides with the progressive wing of the party as a presidential candidate.
R. SOROKAS: He’s sort of moderate and takes the same platform that I believe in and what the Democrats were at one time. As long as he doesn’t get to the socialism part of it, I believe he’d be a very good candidate.