AOC is an asset for Democrats, Greene is an albatross for the GOP

AOC is an asset for Democrats, Greene is an albatross for the GOP
© Bonnie Cash

American politics would be a lot better off if we had a lot more of Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-CortezAlexandria Ocasio-CortezDemocrats face full legislative plate and rising tensions McCarthy on Dems' spending bill: 'The amount of money we spent to win World War II' On The Money — Presented by Wells Fargo — Pelosi plows full speed ahead on jam-packed agenda MORE (D-N.Y,) and a lot less of Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.). Ocasio-Cortez is an asset for Democrats, while Greene is an albatross for Republicans.

The Democrat from New York, also known as AOC, continues to make waves for promoting the Green New Deal and Medicare for All. On the other hand, the Republican from Georgia has made her mark by fanning the flames of hatred.

While Greene favors fiction, Ocasio-Cortez’s fight against the perils of climate change is rooted in science. The problems that Greene brings to the GOP table have been well-documented. She is a follower of QAnon, a group while believes in conspiracy theories about liberals which would be laughable if they weren’t so scary.

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The first term Republican representative “liked” social media posts that called for the execution of “deep state” FBI agents and “a bullet to the head be quicker” for removing Democratic House Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiPelosi says House members would not vote on spending bill topline higher than Senate's McConnell privately urged GOP senators to oppose debt ceiling hike On The Money — Dems dare GOP to vote for shutdown, default MORE (D-Calif.). 

She also described the shooting at the Parkland School in Florida that killed 17 people as a “false flag” operation designed to build support for gun control. 

Pelosi has called Greene’s comments about the Parkland shooting “absolutely appalling,”  and while the House Republican Minority Leader Rep. Kevin McCarthyKevin McCarthyThompson says he hopes Jan 6. committee can complete work by 'early spring' Juan Williams: Shame on the anti-mandate Republicans White House debates vaccines for air travel MORE (R-Calif.) called her statements “deeply disturbing,” he has not found her comments disturbing enough to go as far as calling for her to be removed from her committee assignments.  

The House voted Thursday night to strip Greene from congressional committees.

The fact that McCarthy didn’t take action at all against Greene (he voted against the resolution to remove her) is deafening. Instead of holding Greene accountable for her comments, the majority of GOP House members have rushed to criticize colleague Rep. Liz CheneyElizabeth (Liz) Lynn CheneyTrump, allies launch onslaught as midterms kick into gear The Memo: Never Trumpers sink into gloom as Gonzalez bows out Kinzinger says Trump 'winning' because many Republicans 'have remained silent' MORE (R-Wyo.) for her vote to impeach President TrumpDonald TrumpTrump takes shot at new GOP candidate in Ohio over Cleveland nickname GOP political operatives indicted over illegal campaign contribution from Russian national in 2016 On The Money — Dems dare GOP to vote for shutdown, default MORE.

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While GOP representatives have been silent about Greene’s transgressions, the Senate Republican Minority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellGOP political operatives indicted over illegal campaign contribution from Russian national in 2016 McConnell privately urged GOP senators to oppose debt ceiling hike On The Money — Dems dare GOP to vote for shutdown, default MORE (R-Ky,) slammed her. He called Greene out for her “looney lies and conspiracy theories.”

On the other side of the aisle, Ocasio-Cortez’s positive contributions stand in stark contrast to Greene’s negative comments. The progressive Democrat has been working within the system to make major policy changes.

Ocasio-Cortez’s advocacy for stronger environmental protection and comprehensive health care has made enemies among Democratic congressional leaders, but AOC has made the Congress better and the Democratic Party stronger.

Every caucus needs a conscience and AOC along with other progressive Democrats fill that role admirably for the House Democratic majority.

President Biden has acted quickly and decisively with executive orders to protect the environment. It is hard to imagine that the candidate who ran as a moderate would have been so aggressive as president without the fervid and unrelenting advocacy of AOC and other progressives.  

Biden has not endorsed the Green New Deal but he has acted to bring the United States back into the Paris Agreement, has issued executive orders to stop the Keystone XL pipeline and scaled back oil drilling on federal land in Alaska.

Biden has also installed two heavyweights into his Cabinet: former Secretary of State John KerryJohn KerryEquilibrium/Sustainability — Presented by The American Petroleum Institute — Illegal pot farms dry up Western creeks Overnight Energy & Environment — Presented by Climate Power — Interior returns BLM HQ to Washington Biden confirms 30 percent global methane reduction goal, urges 'highest possible ambitions' MORE and former Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Gina McCarthyGina McCarthyInterior announces expansion of hunting and fishing rights across 2.1 million acres Time to rethink Biden's anti-American energy policies Solar could provide 40 percent of US power generation by 2035, Biden administration says MORE. They are senior White House advisers that will fight against climate change and are welded solidly into presidential domestic and foreign policy.

Now, is the time for the Democratic congressional leadership to embrace Ocasio-Cortez. If they have any doubts about the value that she brings to the Democratic Party, all they need to do is take a long hard look at the menace that Greene poses to the GOP.

Brad Bannon is a Democratic pollster and CEO of Bannon Communications Research. He is also the host of a radio podcast “Deadline D.C. With Brad Bannon” that airs on the Progressive Voices Network. Follow him on Twitter @BradBannon.