Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) said House Speaker Kevin McCarthy is not in control of the House Republican caucus and accused him of bowing to Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.).
In an interview on MSNBC’s “Inside with Jen Psaki,” the former White House press secretary noted that in order to become House speaker, McCarthy had to cut some deals. “We still don’t know the details. Do you think he’s actually running his caucus or do you think someone else is?” Psaki asked.
“He’s not,” Ocasio-Cortez replied. “I think you’ve got Marjorie Taylor Greene running the caucus, and she makes very common public statements to that effect. Every time something irks her, she communicates that McCarthy is doing her bidding. And I think that this is something that is quite clear.”
.@jrpsaki on Kevin McCarthy: “Do you think he’s actually running his caucus?”@AOC: “He’s not. I think you’ve got Marjorie Taylor Greene running the caucus…Every time something irks her, she communicates that McCarthy is doing her bidding.” pic.twitter.com/yUWb8UG33V
— Inside with Jen Psaki (@InsideWithPsaki) April 23, 2023
Ocasio-Cortez added that McCarthy has aligned himself with the far-right faction of his party.
“I think that speaker McCarthy is stuck between having to please the most racist and heinous elements of his party with having to maintain a majority, and he is choosing to side with the extremists,” she said.
Greene was a key supporter of McCarthy during his bid for the speakership, breaking with most of her far-right allies who opposed it. McCarthy won the gavel on the 14th round of voting, after a protracted process that ultimately saw him bow to the demands of hard-right holdouts.
Greene, a conspiracy theorist known for divisive and hateful rhetoric, has risen in just over two years from fringe backbencher to one of the most powerful members of her party, landing seats on the House Oversight and Homeland Security committees this year.