The New York congresswoman spoke to Jane Fonda about the president and the upcoming election.

Por Lena Hansen
Octubre 23, 2020

Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Jane Fonda had a virtual conversation about the 2020 election, early voting, and the barriers each of them have overcome as strong female voices in male-dominated fields. During the chat, Ocasio-Cortez reacted to the comments Donald Trump made about her during Thursday's presidential debate with Joe Biden. "I consider it a little badge of honor," she said. "If the worst and most authoritarian fascistic president in modern history considers me public enemy number one, I think that's a good thing. I think I'm doing a great job."

Donald Trump
Credit: Win McNamee/Getty Images

Ocasio-Cortez wants to debunk the myth that young people don't vote. "The reason young people aren't really passionate or supportive of a lot of elected officials is because a lot of elected officials do nothing to address substantively the real material cares that a young electorate is passionate about," she explained. "Whether it's ending our endless wars, whether it's actually solving our student debt loan crisis, whether it's addressing climate change, I believe that it is an elected official's job to reach out first, and to not just legislate for whoever votes for them."

Alexandria Ocasio Cortez
Credit: Tom Williams-Pool/Getty Images

The renowned actress and activist, 82, and the politician, 31, also discussed the Green New Deal, a proposed package of United States legislation that aims to address climate change and economic inequality. "We have to start viewing the climate crisis as immediate to us as the COVID pandemic," said Fonda.

"Every bill around energy has an implicit discussion about justice," the New York representative, of Puerto Rican descent, added. "When we talk about climate change, when we talk about energy transitions, when we talk about jobs, there are communities that are more desperately impacted than others." Ocasio-Cortez says the way to have winning climate change legislation is to assure people that their livelihoods won't be negatively affected by it. "Not only are we going to transition to cleaner energy, but we are going to give you a better job in the process," she said. "We are going to rebuild all the public housing stock to be clean, to transition to clean energy, and were are going to create thousands of jobs for low- and middle-class people in the process."

Voting for the Democratic ticket is not enough, added the congresswoman. "Yes, we are all rallying in order to make sure that we kick Trump out of office," Ocasio-Cortez said. "But we need a very strong activist wing. It's truly going to be up to everyday people that engage in advocacy and in their government directly. Our future is in the hands of everyday people when it comes to the climate crisis."