Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez took exception to President Donald Trump’s condescending criticism of Democratic lawmakers’ proposed “Green New Deal” at his rally in El Paso, Texas, on Monday.
“Sounds like a high school term paper that got a low mark,” Trump said of the ambitious environmental initiative.
“Ah yes, a man who can’t even read briefings written in full sentences is providing literary criticism of a House Resolution,” the freshman congresswoman tweeted in response to the president’s insult. She added a purported quote from a Washington Post report about the president’s aversion to reading his daily intelligence briefing.
Trump assailed the progressive policy proposal as a “massive government takeover” that would “destroy our incredible economic gains.” He said it would “shut down American energy” and a “little thing called air travel.”
Green New Deal: What is it and what does it mean for climate change?
The Green New Deal resolution introduced by Ocasio-Cortez aims to, among other things, “achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions” within 10 years, make existing infrastructure and buildings more sustainable and energy efficient, and ensure universal access to clean, air, water and food.
The resolution also seeks to guarantee “a job with a family-sustaining wage, adequate family and medical leave, paid vacations, and retirement security to all people of the United States.”
Many of Trump’s criticisms of the plan comes from a “frequently asked questions” summary of the Green New Deal that was put together by Ocasio-Cortez’s office. The FAQ was released and quickly was ridiculed and reviled by conservative media figures and politicians, including Trump. (At one point, Ocasio-Cortez claimed the FAQ had been “doctored,” but that was false.)
“I think it is very important for the Democrats to press forward with their Green New Deal,” Trump tweeted. “It would be great for the so-called ‘Carbon Footprint’ to permanently eliminate all Planes, Cars, Cows, Oil, Gas & the Military – even if no other country would do the same. Brilliant!”
Trump’s statements mischaracterized the contents of both the Green New Deal resolution and the FAQ from Ocasio-Cortez’s office. Although the FAQ did call for the construction of “highspeed rail at a scale where air travel stops becoming necessary,” the resolution only called for increased investment in highspeed trains.