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Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez stopped by The Late Show on Thursday (June 29) following her headline-making victory over longtime incumbent Joe Crowley in New York’s Democratic congressional primary on Tuesday.
Host Stephen Colbert aired the clip that’s since gone viral of a visibly shocked Ocasio-Cortez learning of her win live on TV, and Ocasio-Cortez explained how her memorable reaction came about. “It was so crazy because I had not checked any of the polls in the car on the way to this party, to the watch party,” she said. “I hadn’t checked any of the polls on my phone, and we get out and I go, ‘Oh my God.’ Outside, because I see all of these reporters like running to the watch party and nobody was there. I mean it was our volunteers and supporters and our organizers.”
“If you see reporters running toward you it’s either very good or very bad,” said Colbert.
“So I see these reporters. I’m literally racing these reporters into the billiards hall, and I run inside … and I look up and I see the margin and I see the amount of precincts reporting and that’s how I found out that we won the election,” she recalled.
Ocasio-Cortez said she believes she won the election because she targeted potential voters that are usually not involved in political decisions. “I don’t think polling is always right,” she said about her surprise win. “People try to identify who’s the most likely person to turn out and what we did is that we changed who turns out.”
Colbert then mentioned that she labels herself as a Democratic Socialist and asked her to explain what that translates to in terms of her platform. “For me, Democratic Socialism is about, really, the value for me, is that I believe in a modern, moral and wealthy society. No person in America should be too poor to live,” she explained. “So what that means to me is healthcare as a human right. It means that every child, no matter where you are born, should have access to a college or trade school education if they so choose it. And, you know, I think that no person should be homeless if we can have public structures and public policy to allow for people to have homes and food and lead a dignified life in the United States.”
Trump tweeted on Tuesday (June 26) that Crowley, an outspoken Trump critic, lost the primary election and suggested that perhaps if Crowley had been nicer to him he would’ve won. Colbert then asked if Ocasio-Cortez plans on being nice to Trump.
“You know, the president is from Queens and, with all due respect, half of my district is from Queens,” she began. “I don’t think he knows how to deal with a girl from the Bronx.”
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