Asked if Venezuela’s rightful leader is socialist dictator Nicolas Maduro or internationally recognized interim president Juan Guaido, self-described democratic socialist Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez refused to take a position Thursday.
The question was posed by National Review’s John McCormack.
“Violence is horrible,” replied Ocasio-Cortez, before saying she would “defer to caucus leadership on how we navigate this.”
When asked about the Venezuela crisis last month, Ocasio-Cortez refused to denounce Maduro, decrying “U.S. interventionism.”
On Wednesday, fellow freshman Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., charged U.S. policy in Venezuela “helped lead the devastation” in the South American country.
“A lot of the policies that we have put in place has kind of helped lead the devastation in Venezuela,” she told the “Democracy Now!” news program.
“This particular bullying and the use of sanctions to eventually intervene and make regime change really does not help the people of countries like Venezuela, and it certainly does not help and is not in the interest of the United States,” said Omar.
The Daily Wire reported Ocasio-Cortez and socialist presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., were completely silent on Tuesday when the socialist nation’s military fired on and ran over protesters with armored vehicles amid an effort by Guaido, who is supported by 54 nations, to assume power.
Last month, the Daily Wire noted, Ocasio-Cortez refused to denounce Maduro when asked by a reporter and instead attacked a member of the Trump administration.
“As a democratic socialist, I’m wondering what are your thoughts on the Venezuelan crisis that’s happening right now and if you would denounce the Maduro regime?” a reporter asked.
“Yeah, so, I think that, that this is absolutely a complex issue,” Ocasio-Cortez responded. “I think it’s important that, uh, that we approach this very carefully. One I am, um, myself just like anyone else who is absolutely concerned with the humanitarian crises that’s happening and I think it’s important that any solution that we have centers the Venezuelan people and centers the democracy of Venezuelan people first.”
“I am very concerned about U.S. interventionism in Venezuela, and I oppose it, especially when we talk about a figure like this U.S. Special Envoy Elliott Abrams here,” Ocasio-Cortez continued. “I think it’s, he’s pled guilty to several crimes related to Iran-contra and I don’t think that we should be, you know I am generally opposed to U.S. interventionism as a principle, but particularly under this administration and under his leadership I think it’s a profound mistake.”
Green New Deal ‘the path of Venezuela’
A Venezuelan citizen who left the nation in his teens for America warned supporters of Ocasio-Cortez’s Green New Deal in a February interview.
“People are starving in Venezuela because policies such as the one that Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez [supported] in her Green New Deal, which in reality is just the ‘red new deal’ which is just a socialist wish list, would destroy the U.S. economy and lead us into the path of Venezuela,” Daniel Di Martino told Fox News.
A study by the American Action Forum estimated the Green New Deal would cost $94.4 trillion over a decade, which amounts to $600,000 per U.S. household.
Sanders, who also describes himself as a democratic socialist, has been clear about his support of such policies as universal health care and free college tuition. But CNN found in March that when he first ran for the Senate in the 1970s, he advocated full-blown socialist policies such as nationalizing major industries, including energy companies, factories and banks.
And he campaigned for a 100 percent income tax for the wealthiest Americans.
The Washington Post ran a story Friday on Sanders’ honeymoon in the communist Soviet Union in 1988.
The paper said he was “enthralled with the hospitality and the lessons that could be brought home.”
“Let’s take the strengths of both systems,” he said upon completing the trip. “Let’s learn from each other.”