While I'm under no illusions that Alex from the Bronx is a dyed-in-the-wool Democratic socialist or the Millennial political savior for US Progressives, she is a phenomenon well worth watching. Seeing how Republican legislators respond to her very presence in the House and her public statements interests me. Seeing how members of her own party respond—not just her colleagues in Congress, but other high-profile liberals as well--fascinates me. (See Mike Figueredo's analysis of Whoopi Goldberg's gentle condescension below.)
In public appearances with AOC, establishment Democrats twitch uncomfortably, worried that she might start talking about Green New Deals and Medicare for All. In op-eds, they whip out adjectives like naive and unrealistic, or more diplomatic equivalents.
AOC may be 28, and not as well schooled in How Things Work in DC as her colleagues. But she knows one very important and undeniable fact: Shit is fucked up, and it's up to ordinary people to fix that. Elected representatives won't do the right thing until the people force them to. The corporate Dems need to get used to that ASAP.