Ocasio-Cortez just showed Democrats how to end the purity wars
Bernie Sanders is more of a pragmatist than you may think. He’s even more of a pragmatist than many of his own supporters think. In fact, throughout his career Sanders has managed to make a case for maximalist policy such as single-payer health care while still supporting compromises such as the Affordable Care Act when his vote was needed.
But it’s one thing to be a member of Congress and it’s another to be president, and should Sanders win the White House, questions of how far to push and what to accept will define his term in office.
Which is why it was interesting to see his most high-profile supporter, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, inject this note of pragmatism into the debate:
Quote: More here
Ocasio-Cortez ― one of the most outspoken advocates for Medicare for All ― said she thought voters understood there was an “inherent check” on the president’s ability to actually change things like our health care system. And she argued that the realities of governing were actually an argument for someone like Sanders, as he’d be able to push Democrats and resulting changes further left.
But Ocasio-Cortez is also realistic about how far even a President Sanders could actually move Congress.
“The worst-case scenario? We compromise deeply and we end up getting a public option. Is that a nightmare? I don’t think so,” she said.
Ocasio-Cortez stressed that just getting a public option for health care wasn’t the left’s ultimate goal. But she also said she wasn’t here to railroad other members with differing viewpoints on health care ― she just thinks it helps to have a president who has a more ambitious platform than Congress so that Democrats could stretch what’s possible.