(CNSNews.com) – Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) said Thursday that she was not snubbed by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), who appointed a climate change commission, and did not appoint her to it.
During a Capitol Hill press conference, Ocasio-Cortez and Sen. Ed Markey (D-Mass.) announced that they have introduced a resolution that recognizes “the duty of the Federal Government to create a Green New Deal.” It cites an October 2018 Special Report on Global Warming by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and a November 2018 Fourth National Climate Assessment report.
When asked whether she was offended that Pelosi called it the Green Dream, Ocasio-Cortez said, “No, I think it is a Green Dream, and I think that—all great American programs – everything from the Great Society to the New Deal started with a vision for our future, and ... I don’t consider that to be a dismissive term. I think it’s a great term.”
Markey said that “there is no greater champion on climate change than Nancy Pelosi.”
“I was the chair of the Select Committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming. There’s no greater champion, and just at noontime today, she said she welcomes the enthusiasm of the backers of the Green New Deal, and that’s what we have here,’ he said.
“All issues go through three phases: political education, political activation, political implementation. So you are seeing the beginning of the education and activation phase, and ultimately, we’re going to have the legislation, implementation phase of this program as well,” Markey added.
“You talk about being 100 percent united, but today Speaker Pelosi appointed a climate commission that you are not on, and in her remarks today said she had not even read the resolution. So how sure are you that she’s behind this effort?” a reporter asked.
Ocasio-Cortez said she and Pelosi “have spoken at length about climate” and they “share this priority.”
“She did in fact invite me to be on the committee, and so I don’t think that this is a snub. I don’t think that this is anything like that, and we can have the conversation about the committee another day, but today is about the vision that we’re putting forth on the actual legislative plan. Right now, this legislative scope is the only legislative scope that has been presented in this Congress,” she said.
When asked why she decided not to serve on the committee, Ocasio-Cortez said, “I serve on the Environmental Subcommittee of Oversight. I’m on four subcommittees.
“We’re doing this, and additionally, the select committee is an investigatory body, and I’m really excited to support Representative Castor in her agenda, in holding these hearings in front-line communities. So they’re tackling the investigative piece, and right now, we’re tackling the legislative piece,” she said.
During her weekly Capitol Hill press conference, Pelosi was asked whether the Green New Deal was a useful baseline.
“Quite frankly, I haven’t seen it, but I do know it’s enthusiastic, and we welcome all enthusiasms out there. The purpose though of this select committee and the tasking that I have given to the committees of jurisdictions – I didn’t even have to task them,” she said.
“They had their own enthusiasms for it – was that we would have a evidence-based, well-defined approach to how we go forward to make a difference, because even then in 2000 – well, 2007 when we passed the first energy bill but then continuing that debate under President Obama, it was getting too late, and now we’re well past that time. Time is of the essence,” Pelosi said.
“We welcome the enthusiasm that is there. The Green Deal points out the fact that the public is much more aware of the challenge we face, and that is a good thing, because the public sentiment will help us pass the most bold common denominator, the bold initiatives with the interest in again, saving the planet while we create jobs, protect the health of our children and pass the planet on in a very serious way,” she said.
“I’m very excited about it all, and I welcome Green New Deal and any other proposals that people have out there,” the speaker added.