Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) did not hold back during her first House Oversight Committee meeting on Tuesday, making a mark instantly by putting ranking Republican member Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.) in his place after he talked down to her.
The freshman lawmaker and progressive star has been making a splash since being sworn in earlier this month, most recently by slamming Davos billionaires for being scared of her marginal tax proposal.
As a member of the House Oversight Committee, Ocasio-Cortez will have the opportunity to question witnesses called to testify as part of a renewed Russia probe as well as provide oversight over the administration as a whole, a vital check she is eager to perform.
During a meeting on Tuesday, Meadows and his Republican colleagues demanded five days’ notice to attend questioning of witnesses by Democratic staff attorneys instead of three from chairman Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.).
That’s when Ocasio-Cortez spoke up, arguing that three days is enough notice and will keep the committee moving in service to the American people.
“I agree with the spirit of personal responsibility that we can show up to our jobs and we don’t have to be forced or compelled to do so,” she said. “I also believe that five days, again, we are a responsive body and I want us to communicate to the American public that we are a responsive body, that we are an effective and efficient body.”
“I don’t believe we need five days,” she continued, pointing out that Republicans often claim to not like bureaucracy that makes government work slower and less efficient, saying that three days’ notice should be enough if lawmakers are focused on doing their jobs.
Meadows, of course, objected to her statement and proceeded to mansplain how Congress supposedly works.
“Mr. Chairman, I can tell you on all of this at this particular point, we’re all wanting to cooperate,” he claimed. “Sometimes our schedules, you know, we’re not just sitting around eating bonbons, waiting for the call of anybody. There are complex scheduling.”
Ocasio-Cortez fired back by asking Cummings if Republicans extended the same five days’ notice to Democrats when they controlled the committee over the last two years. Cummings replied that they had not, as a matter of fact.
“Okay, thank you,” Ocasio-Cortez said.
In the end, Cummings said that he would weigh whether to give a notice of five days sometimes, but not all the time.
However, Meadows clearly got his a** handed to him during this meeting. Ocasio-Cortez responded to Meadows’ insult by revealing his hypocrisy and the hypocrisy of Republicans. After all, why should Republicans be granted five days’ notice when Democrats were not given the same amount of time when Republicans were in control. It’s a double standard that Ocasio-Cortez brilliantly called out and it’s a signal that she’s more than ready to take Republicans to the woodshed for the next two years. President Donald trump and the GOP better watch out because oversight has returned.
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