Democratic congressional candidate Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez on Monday claimed Republicans send her letters of support “all the time” because of her stance against accepting corporate donations.
Ocasio-Cortez, a self-described democratic socialist, made the claim during an appearance on the podcast “Pod Save America,” which is hosted by former Obama administration staff members.
“We need to start reframing our issues, instead of left and right to top and down and it’s not about ‘Oh I have to weather my message to Republicans.’ There are people that really want to feel like there’s an unapologetic working-class champion for them,” Ocasio-Cortez said.
She went on to talk about a few Democratic primaries where candidates received a significant–but not enough to win–percentage of the vote without the support of big donors. She argued that’s what voters, including Republicans, were concerned with.
“I think that it’s going to require a little busting of this idea that we have of politics that has been so calcified– that we have taken so much as fact that I just don’t think is necessarily true,” Ocasio-Cortez said. “I even get letters from Republicans all the time who support me because I don’t take corporate money.”
Ocasio-Cortez did not elaborate on the content or specify what Republicans were sending her letters.
Ocasio-Cortez has been outspoken against financial support from corporate political action committees, but she has accepted $10,000 from two progressive PACs: MoveOn.org and Justice Democrats. Both PACs contributed $5,000 each to her campaign, according to the Center for Responsive Politics.
While she has been popular with progressives in the Democratic Party, she has also faced backlash from some within her own party who believe she is making “enemies” and showing a “lack of maturity.”
Ocasio-Cortez will face Anthony Pappas, the Republican candidate in New York’s 14th Congressional District, in the November general election.