President Donald Trump reportedly said that Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez reminded him of Eva Perón, popularly known as Evita. And Ocasio-Cortez didn´t seem to mind the comparison very much, using the opportunity to tweet out two famous quotes attributed to the former Argentine first lady.
Trump made the comparison during an interview for the book American Carnage: On the Front Lines of the Republican Civil War and the Rise of President Trump by Politico’s Tim Alberta. The book is scheduled to be published July 16 but the Guardian obtained a copy and published some excerpts in which Trump claims he first noticed Ocasio-Cortez during the 2018 primary race against incumbent Joe Crowley. Trump was allegedly watching television with advisers when the young politician caught his eye.
“I see a young woman,” he says, “ranting and raving like a lunatic on a street corner, and I said: ‘That’s interesting, go back.’” Trump then “became enamored” and “starstruck” by Ocasio-Cortez, according to Alberta. “I called her Eva Perón,” Trump says. “I said, ‘That’s Eva Perón. That’s Evita.” When Ocasio-Cortez won the primary, Trump saw it as an example of how he is “good at talent” because he “spotted talent.” When speaking to Alberta, Trump tempered that praise, noting that while “she’s got talent” she also “doesn’t know anything. She’s got a good sense, an ‘it’ factor, which is pretty good, but she knows nothing.”
Ocasio-Cortez linked to a story about the report and wrote a quote that she attributed to the former first lady: “I know that, like every woman of the people, I have more strength than I appear to have.” She quickly followed that up with another quote: “I had watched for many years and seen how a few rich families held much of Argentina’s wealth and power in their hands. So the government brought in an eight-hour working day, sickness pay and fair wages to give poor workers a fair go.”
Trump has been public about his love of the Andrew Lloyd-Webber musical Evita about the former first lady. In his 2004 book, Trump said that it was his “favorite Broadway show,” claiming he had seen it six times. Eva Perón, whose full name was María Eva Duarte de Perón, was the wife of Juan Domingo Perón and she was first lady from 1946 until she died in 1952 at the age of 33.