Hill.TV's Krystal Ball says Ocasio-Cortez has become a force in Democratic Party

Hill.TV host Krystal Ball praised Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-CortezAlexandria Ocasio-CortezHouse passes bill to avert shutdown Trump attacks Omar for criticizing US: 'How did you do where you came from?' The Memo: Dems face balancing act on SCOTUS fight MORE’s (D-N.Y.) first year in Congress, saying the progressive lawmaker has distinguished herself in the Democratic Party.

Ball said Ocasio-Cortez, who is often referred to as AOC, has honed a kind of political acumen that puts her above many other Democratic lawmakers.

“AOC’s understanding of the long-game, of how pushing previously radical ideas into the conversation, can dramatically shift what’s possible,” Ball said Tuesday. “That understanding has handed her power and influence that exceeds nearly anyone, to include the Speaker of the House.”

Ocasio-Cortez’s stunning 2018 primary upset over then-House Democratic Caucus Chairman Joe CrowleyJoseph (Joe) CrowleyHillicon Valley: Election officials prepare for new Russian interference battle | 'Markeyverse' of online fans helps take down a Kennedy | GOP senators unveil bill to update tech liability protections 'Markeyverse' of online fans helps take down a Kennedy The Hill's Campaign Report: Trump visits Kenosha | Primary day in Massachusetts | GOP eyes Minnesota as a battleground MORE marked one of the biggest political upsets of the decade.

Since then, the House freshman has emerged as a rising star in the party, and is part of a group of prominent progressive lawmakers known as “the squad.” That group includes Democratic Reps. Rashida TlaibRashida Harbi TlaibTrump attacks Omar for criticizing US: 'How did you do where you came from?' George Conway: 'Trump is like a practical joke that got out of hand' Pelosi endorses Kennedy in Massachusetts Senate primary challenge MORE (Mich.), Ilhan OmarIlhan OmarOmar fires back at Trump over rally remarks: 'This is my country' Trump attacks Omar for criticizing US: 'How did you do where you came from?' Democrats scramble on COVID-19 relief amid division, Trump surprise MORE (Minn.) and Ayanna PressleyAyanna PressleyTrump attacks Omar for criticizing US: 'How did you do where you came from?' Pressley applauded on House floor after moving speech on living with alopecia San Francisco considers changing local voting age to 16 MORE (Mass.).

Members of the "the squad" have often clashed with more moderate Democratic leaders and other long-time Democrats.

Ocasio-Cortez recently told New York Magazine that she and former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenOmar fires back at Trump over rally remarks: 'This is my country' Trump mocks Biden appearance, mask use ahead of first debate Trump attacks Omar for criticizing US: 'How did you do where you came from?' MORE would not be members of the same political party if they were in any other country. 

“In any other country, Joe Biden and I would not be in the same party, but in America, we are,” Ocasio-Cortez told the publication in a profile piece published Monday.

Biden, meanwhile, has said Ocasio-Cortez is not an accurate measure of the direction of the Democratic Party.