Alternative Investment Report

Ocasio-Cortez backing Biden: ‘The matter is closed’

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) reaffirmed her support for President Biden on Monday as calls from Democrats for him to step aside as the party’s presumptive nominee for the White House have increased.

“I have spoken to the president over the weekend. I have spoken with him extensively,” Ocasio-Cortez told reporters outside the Capitol on Monday evening. “He made clear then — and he has made clear since — that he is in this race.”

“The matter is closed,” she continued. “He had reiterated that this morning. He has reiterated that to the public. Joe Biden is our nominee. He is not leaving this race. He is in this race, and I support him.”

Jon Stewart critical of White House messaging on Biden’s health

Ocasio-Cortez’s statement of support comes as the party tries to find a path forward after Biden’s poor debate performance sparked concerns about whether he is the best candidate to defeat former President Trump in November.

At least six House Democrats have publicly called for the 81-year-old incumbent to step aside, while others have expressed similar sentiments privately. At the same time, some Democrats have doubled down on their support for Biden — including many leaders within the Congressional Black Caucus and Congressional Hispanic Caucus.

Biden, too, has dug his heels in. He has vowed not to drop out of the race and dismissed calls for him to do so as the desires of party “elites” and not those of average voters. In a phone interview with MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” on Monday, he also dared others to challenge him.

“I’m getting frustrated by the elites in the party, ‘Oh, they know so much more,’” the president said. “Any of these guys that don’t think I should run, run against me. Announce for president, challenge me at the convention.”

Sanders says the media has made politics ‘into a beauty contest’

Ocasio-Cortez drew a contrast between Trump and Biden in reiterated her support for the incumbent, noting the 45th president was recently convicted on 34 felony charges in New York, “and not a single Republican has asked for Donald Trump to not be the nominee” since he became the GOP’s presumptive 2024 presidential nominee.

She also said the Biden campaign must articulate a clear plan to address voters’ concerns and make sure to “commit to the issues that are critically important to working people across this country,” like expanding Medicare and Social Security and providing relief when it comes to rent and mortgages.

“If we can do that and continue our work on student loans, secure a cease-fire, and bring those dollars back into investing in public policy, then that’s how we win in November,” the New York Democrat said. “That’s what I’m committed to, and that’s what I want to make sure that we secure.”