Ocasio-Cortez pushes back on McConnell's claim of 'modern-day McCarthyism'

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-CortezAlexandria Ocasio-CortezDes Moines Register endorses Elizabeth Warren as Democratic presidential nominee Sanders faces lingering questions about appeal to women voters Moore defends Sanders's reputation: 'We don't want the fake, and the phony and the fraudulent' MORE (D-N.Y.) blasted Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellSchumer: Trump's team made case for new witnesses 'even stronger' Trump, Democrats risk unintended consequences with impeachment arguments CNN's Axelrod says impeachment didn't come up until 80 minutes into focus group MORE (R-Ky.) on Tuesday for comparing attacks against him to “modern-day McCarthyism.”

“McCarthyism is the practice of baselessly accusing political opponents of being communists as unjust grounds for targeting & harassment,” Ocasio-Cortez tweeted. “You are blocking action to protect US elections despite official DoJ pleas. That doesn’t make you a communist. It just makes you a bad leader.” 

Ocasio-Cortez’s comments come after McConnell blocked attempts by Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerTrump legal team offers brisk opening defense of president Impeachment has been a dud for Democrats Trump insults Democrats, calls on followers to watch Fox News ahead of impeachment trial MORE (D-N.Y.) and Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) to pass election security bills last week, despite former special counsel Robert MuellerRobert (Bob) Swan MuellerSchiff: Trump acquittal in Senate trial would not signal a 'failure' Jeffries blasts Trump for attack on Thunberg at impeachment hearing Live coverage: House Judiciary to vote on impeachment after surprise delay MORE’s warning that foreign interference was likely to take place in the 2020 elections.

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McConnell, who argued that Democrats were trying to give themselves a "political benefit” with the bills,  quickly faced widespread backlash for his objections, prompting him to say his critics — specifically pointing out The Washington Post and MSNBC — were using “unhinged smears."

“Modern-day McCarthyism is poison for American democracy,” McConnell tweeted Monday. “It is shameful to imply that policy disagreements make the other side unpatriotic. The people who push such unhinged smears are doing Putin’s destabilizing work for him.”

“I was called unpatriotic, un-American and essentially treasonous by a couple of left-wing pundits on the basis of bold-faced lies. I was accused of aiding and abetting the very man I’ve singled out as an adversary and opposed for nearly 20 years, Vladimir PutinVladimir Vladimirovich PutinSchiff shows clip of McCain in Trump impeachment trial The need for clear thinking about Russia German president expresses 'sorrow' for Holocaust, warns 'spirits of evil' are rising MORE,” McConnell said during a fiery speech from the Senate floor.