U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has explained why she shed tears on the House floor last week over a vote on funding Israel’s Iron Dome defense system.
“Yes, I wept,” the New York progressive wrote in a letter to constituents. "I wept at the complete lack of care for the human beings that are impacted by these decisions, I wept at an institution choosing a path of maximum volatility and minimum consideration for its own political convenience. And I wept at the complete lack of regard I often feel our party has to its most vulnerable and endangered members and communities—because the death threats and dangerous vitriol we’d inevitably receive by rushing such a sensitive, charged, and under-considered vote weren’t worth delaying it for even a few hours to help us do the work necessary to open a conversation of understanding.”
AOC appears to be sobbing after she voted 'present' for funding to replenish Israel’s Iron Dome Defense Systemspic.twitter.com/dItuF0eRM5— Breaking911 (@Breaking911) September 23, 2021
A note to our NY-14 constituents, from Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez pic.twitter.com/mOmJrgFa4G— Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@RepAOC) September 24, 2021
AOC said she opposed the bill but cast a present vote, which she didn't explain in the letter. She has previously criticized lawmakers who cast such votes, like former Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, who voted present on impeachment. At the time, Ocasio-Cortez said members of Congress are sent there "to lead" and should vote either yes or no.
While Tlaib, Omar, Bush and Pressley voted NO to fund Israel's Iron Dome (arguing they should fund it themselves), AOC voted "present", just like she voted "present" on Pelosi's $2b for the Capitol Police.— Glenn Greenwald (@ggreenwald) September 23, 2021
Here's what AOC said about Tulsi's "present" vote on impeachment: https://t.co/hH7VqVLf7R pic.twitter.com/M8PvWSjMvk
“To those I have disappointed – I am deeply sorry," she wrote in the letter. "To those who believe this reasoning is insufficient or cowardice – I understand."