Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) used her inaugural speech on the House floor to condemn President Donald Trump over the ongoing partial government shutdown.
The freshman congresswoman said Wednesday the shutdown was not really about Trump’s demands for a wall on the U.S.-Mexico border or “the well-being of everyday Americans.” Instead, she said, it was “about the erosion of American democracy and the subversion of our most basic governmental norms.”
”It is not normal to hold 800,000 workers’ paychecks hostage. It is not normal to shut down the government when we don’t get what we want. It is not normal for public servants to run away and hide from the public that they serve,” Ocasio-Cortez added. “And it is certainly not normal to starve the people we serve for a proposal that is wildly unpopular among the American people.”
The jobs performed by federal workers and the anti-immigrant sentiment of Trump’s administration were “stressful enough” without the shutdown, she said, noting that Trump shared in the “responsibility to maintain the basic functioning” of government.
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Earlier in the day, Ocasio-Cortez joined fellow freshmen Democrats in searching for Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.).
They wanted to hand over a letter demanding the end of the shutdown. Ocasio-Cortez and her colleagues documented their hunt, which proved unsuccessful, on Twitter:
The #WheresMitch hashtag also captured the imagination of others online: