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AOC Says the U.S. Economy ‘Is In A Special Kind of Crisis’

Image of AOC from MSNBC appearance. Image Credit: YouTube Screenshot.
Image of AOC from MSNBC appearance. Image Credit: YouTube Screenshot.

The president is running on the success of “Bidenomics,” but the New York Congresswoman, AOC, who has endorsed him, referred to an economy in “crisis” in a speech this week. 

What Did AOC Say? 

Who is the economy going right now? That’s a very complicated question. 

Unemployment is very low, the stock market has recovered much of what it lost during the “correction” of last year, and inflation is still off from its highs of last year. A recession, very much feared a year ago, has not come to pass. 

That said, surveys show that Americans do not see the economy as particularly robust. And this could hurt President Biden, who is running for re-election on the strength of what he and his campaign call “Bidenomics.” 

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), a self-proclaimed Democratic Socialist, endorsed Biden for re-election, in an appearance on the “Pod Save America” podcast, which is hosted by several ex-Obama staffers. 

This angered some longtime fans of the Congresswoman, who had backed Bernie Sanders in the 2020 campaign, while one op-ed argued that the endorsement and how it was done showed that Ocasio-Cortez is now just another Democrat.

This week, as pointed out by Fox News, Ocasio-Cortez spoke to a union audience in Missouri, and described the economy as in a “crisis.” 

“Our economy is in a special kind of crisis. Our whole economy is in a special kind of crisis,” the Congresswoman said. “Now if you ask a Washington insider or a Wall Street analyst, they will tell you, ‘I don’t know what you’re talking about… They’ll say, ‘Look at GDP. Look at the growth rate.’ They’ll say, ‘Look at job numbers. How are we in a crisis?’”

This does contradict the messaging that’s coming from Biden. But at the same time, Ocasio-Cortez and the president are likely to approach political questions very differently from one another. 

AOC made that clear in her speech. 

“That’s an easy thing to say for someone who primarily experiences this economy on paper – who aren’t choosing between childcare and work, or medicine and rent. It’s easy to say that when you’re not making those decisions,” Rep. Ocasio-Cortez said in Missouri, per Fox News. 

“Because those of us who do have to make those decisions, feel the economy in the callouses of our hands and the aches of our joints at the end of a long day, so we don’t have any time left, proper time, to spend with our children or loved ones.”

Biden may not see eye to eye with AOC on everything, but on Tuesday he did something that she has done a lot of in the past: He visited a picket line. 

According to CNN, Biden on Tuesday visited the striking United Auto Workers’ picket line in Michigan. 

“The fact of the matter is that you guys, UAW, you guys saved the automobile industry,” the president said, in what was a rare visit by a sitting president to an active picket line. 

“Folks, you’ve heard me say many times, Wall Street didn’t build this country, the middle class built this country, and unions built the middle class. That’s a fact, so let’s keep going. You deserve what you’ve earned, and you’ve earned a hell of a lot more than you’re getting paid.”

On Wednesday, former President Donald Trump, Biden’s past and possibly future opponent, will also visit Michigan, where he will address what has been described as a group of “current and former union members.” The speech will take place at the same time as the next Republican presidential debate, which Trump is once again skipping. 

The head of UAW, Shawn Fain, is not on board with the Trump speech, he made clear to CNN. 

“Every fiber of our union is being poured into fighting the billionaire class and an economy that enriches people like Donald Trump at the expense of workers,” Fain told the network. “We can’t keep electing billionaires and millionaires that don’t have any understanding what it is like to live paycheck to paycheck and struggle to get by and expecting them to solve the problems of the working class.”

Author Expertise and Experience

Stephen Silver is a Senior Editor for 19FortyFive. He is an award-winning journalist, essayist and film critic, who is also a contributor to the Philadelphia Inquirer, the Jewish Telegraphic Agency, Broad Street Review and Splice Today. The co-founder of the Philadelphia Film Critics Circle, Stephen lives in suburban Philadelphia with his wife and two sons. Stephen has authored thousands of articles over the years that focus on politics, technology, and the economy for over a decade. Follow him on X (formerly Twitter) at @StephenSilver, and subscribe to his Substack newsletter.

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Written By

Stephen Silver is a journalist, essayist, and film critic, who is also a contributor to Philly Voice, Philadelphia Weekly, the Jewish Telegraphic Agency, Living Life Fearless, Backstage magazine, Broad Street Review, and Splice Today. The co-founder of the Philadelphia Film Critics Circle, Stephen lives in suburban Philadelphia with his wife and two sons. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenSilver.