The Slatest

Ocasio-Cortez Slams McCaskill After She Calls Her a “Thing,” “Shiny New Object”

Representative-elect Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) reacts after drawing a lottery number for her new office on Capitol Hill November 30, 2018 in Washington, D.C.
Representative-elect Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) reacts after drawing a lottery number for her new office on Capitol Hill November 30, 2018 in Washington, D.C.
BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/Getty Images

Rep.-elect Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez made it clear Saturday she isn’t just willing to stand up to Republicans who criticize her as she responded to comments made by outgoing Sen. Claire McCaskill that essentially repeated many of the Republican talking points against the incoming lawmaker. “Not sure why fmr Sen. McCaskill keeps going on TV to call me a ‘thing’ and ‘shiny object,’ but it’s pretty disappointing,” Ocasio-Cortez, a Democrat from New York, wrote on Twitter. She went on to criticize the two-term senator from Missouri who lost her seat in November when she was defeated by the state’s former attorney general, Josh Hawley, who received Trump’s endorsement.

“I don’t know her,” McCaskill told CNN in an interview earlier this week when she was asked whether she would consider Ocasio-Cortez a “crazy Democrat” as she referred to some of the members of her party on the campaign trail. “I’m a little confused why she’s the thing. But it’s a good example of what I’m talking about—a bright shiny new object, came out of nowhere and surprised people when she beat a very experienced congressman.” She then went on to note that even though Ocasio-Cortez is “now talked about a lot,” at the end of the day, “I’m not sure what she’s done yet to generate that kind of enthusiasm.”

McCaskill was also more than a bit patronizing toward the incoming lawmaker, wishing her well but also offering a piece of advice. “I hope she also realizes that the parts of the country that are rejecting the Democratic Party, like a whole lot of white working class voters, need to hear about how their work is going to be respected, and the dignity of their jobs, and how we can really stick to issues that we can actually accomplish something on,” she said. “The rhetoric is cheap. Getting results is a lot harder.”

Ocasio-Cortez then continued her criticism of McCaskill in a subsequent tweet, questioning why she felt it necessary to publicly speak about how Republican senators criticize the president in private conversations. “I’m also not sure why McCaskill is covering for the GOP by saying they ‘secretly think Trump is nuts’,” she wrote. “Nobody cares. Trump is melting down our institutions and inciting division between people. At any time GOP could have checked him and choose not to. They’re accomplices.”