by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
Vox dubbed her “the most buzzed-about first-term member of the House of Representatives,” and The Atlantic credited her with an “unusually transparent approach to public relations.” She’s a former Bernie Sanders campaign volunteer and a self-styled democratic socialist. Despite all the fanfare, her recent “60 Minutes” interview with Anderson Cooper shined a bright spotlight on a painful fact: Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez will make it harder for young women in politics to be taken seriously in the future.
In mere minutes, Ocasio-Cortez managed to affirm nearly every negative stereotype about the female sex, from the trope that we’re no good at math to the notion that you shouldn’t trust us with a credit card. If all you saw was her example, you’d think we’re all just emotional dreamers who need to be reined in by reality.
Ocasio-Cortez is not the feminist hero most media coverage has made her out to be. If anything, her time in the spotlight has set women in politics back.
“I think that there’s a lot of people more concerned about being precisely, factually, and semantically correct than about being morally right,” Ocasio-Cortez told Cooper after he asked about her careless and incorrect analysis of the defense budget. In one sentence, Ocasio-Cortez portrayed herself as a woman who is ready to subordinate facts to her moral convictions, confirming achingly anti-female stereotypes. She may as well have driven erratically down the highway or failed to catch a gently thrown ball.