Ocasio-Cortez Vows To Destroy Who?

Dimitri Rodriguez, CC BY 2.0 , via Wikimedia Commons

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a well-known member of the Democratic Party’s progressive faction known as “The Squad,” expressed her discontent with the U.S. Supreme Court’s recent rulings, referring to them as an “overstep” of judicial authority. Following the high court’s rulings against affirmative action and President Biden’s proposal for student loan debt cancellation, Ocasio-Cortez suggested that impeachment and subpoenas could be used to check the power of the justices.

Ocasio-Cortez argued on CNN’s “State of the Union” that the Supreme Court’s authority had been overstepped. She further urged that discussions should take place on the topic of judicial review to balance the power of the courts.

This past week, the Supreme Court concluded its term with several consequential decisions. These included rulings against the consideration of race in admissions, support for a Christian web designer’s refusal to create websites for same-sex weddings, and the dismissal of President Biden’s plan to cancel student loan debt. The rulings have been viewed by Democrats as direct assaults on left-leaning policies, leading to criticism of the court as lacking legitimacy.

The congresswoman from New York stated that these recent decisions are indicative of a worrying trend toward authoritarianism and increased concentration of power in the judicial system. She also pointed out that Justice Elena Kagan herself has noted that the Supreme Court appears to be taking on legislative powers.

Ocasio-Cortez has been open about her advocacy for court reform and curbing the power of the Supreme Court. In a discussion with CNN’s Dana Bash, she insisted that the consideration of subpoenas and impeachment should be on the table in response to these actions.

The New York Democrat emphasized that if Chief Justice Roberts doesn’t willingly cooperate with a congressional investigation, the consideration of subpoenas and investigations should be escalated. She also insisted on establishing stringent ethical guidelines, especially in situations where justices, like Clarence Thomas, refuse to recuse themselves from cases involving their personal connections.

Ocasio-Cortez further asserted the necessity of considering impeachment. She argued that the Supreme Court has not been subjected to the required scrutiny to uphold its legitimacy. She blamed the court’s decisions for undermining its own legitimacy, which she believes could have grave implications for democracy.

In contrast, President Biden has recently expressed his opposition to expanding the Supreme Court. He voiced concerns in an MSNBC interview about the politicization of the court due to progressive efforts to increase its size.

Ocasio-Cortez also made waves following the Supreme Court’s ruling on affirmative action when she challenged the court’s commitment to its claim of “colorblindness”. She suggested that if the court were sincere, it would eliminate legacy admissions. She used Harvard’s legacy admissions, where 70% of applicants are white, as an example and noted that the court did not address this issue which significantly impacts the court’s supporters and beneficiaries. Her comments drew the attention of numerous social media users who pointed out that the matter of legacy admissions was not addressed in the court’s ruling.