Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Upsets  Rep. Joseph Crowley In NY Primary
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5 Things To Know About Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Politics' New Aspirant

On Tuesday evening (June 26), Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez took a giant step to become the youngest woman elected to Congress, CNN reports. 

On Tuesday evening (June 26), Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez took another giant step to potentially become the youngest woman elected to Congress, CNN reports (she needs to win over Republican Anthony Pappa in November's elections to attain this feat). While running her first campaign, the Bronx native defeated Joe Crowley (D-NY) who's held his seat in New York's 14th district (formerly the 7th district) since 1999.

For Ocasio-Cortez, this moment has been a long time coming. According to Elite Daily, the 28-year-old's relationship with politics has been nurtured since she was a kid growing up in a Puerto Rican household.

"Politics were talked about at the table every single day," she said. "It's the culture. In Puerto Rico, you talk about politics all the time, even when people disagree." In a statement issued to The New York Times, her mother, Blanca Ocasio-Cortez said, “There was nobody who could shut her up. I saw the political tendencies since she was very, very young.”

After graduating from Boston University in 2011 with degrees in economics and international relations, Ocasio-Cortez became a teacher at the National Hispanic Institute, and worked as a bartender in Manhattan's Flats Fix Taco Y Tequila Bar to help support her family after her father's passing in 2008.

Now that she's fully elected, Ocasio-Cortez plans to spearhead initiatives that'll make the cost of college easily affordable, implement universal healthcare, and tackle the city's housing crisis while encouraging other young people to run for office: "We need an entire generation to start taking up these seats."

Before she confirms an oath of office, here's a little bit of background on Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez's beginnings and her plans for the future.

1. She Created A Book Publishing Company To Boost Literacy Among The Bronx's Youth

According to the New York Daily News, Ocasio-Cortez established Brook Avenue Press in 2012, an outlet that promotes "parent-child literacy education" and publishes positive stories of the Bronx in opposition of letting society's bleak views define the borough. Around that same time, Ocasio-Cortez was a part of an entrepreneur program, The Sunshine Bronx Business Incubator, which provided funding for a bevy of startups in the community.

2. Ocasio-Cortez Became Familiar With The Campaign Trail While Working With Bernie Sanders

In 2016, the New Yorker supported another native, Bernie Sanders, during his race for the Democratic presidential nomination. Prior to that, she worked on Sen. Ted Kennedy's (D-Mass.) team. Ocasio-Cortez is also a part of the Democratic Socialists of America, an organization that attempts to "decrease the influence of money in politics." Through her previous work, Ocasio-Cortez believes running a grassroots campaign aided in her win.

"It was an advantage, actually, because our community here really wanted to do something and they didn't want to feel like they were choosing to organize the campaign over choosing to comment and organize around this moment," she said.

3. Ocasio-Cortez Has Marched For Clean Water In Flint And Against The Dakota Access Pipeline

The Bronxite has remained steadfast in fighting for the people when it comes to the basic necessities. She's visited the places most affected by tainted water in Flint, Mich., and at the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation in North and South Dakota to place a halt on the Dakota Access Pipeline. In an interview with Jezebel's "The Slot," Ocasio-Cortez shared that visiting Standing Rock partly influenced her desire to run for office.

"I saw a fossil fuel corporation that had literally militarized itself against American people, and I saw that our incumbents in both parties were defending them and were silent," she said. "And I just felt like we’re at a point where we can’t afford to be silent anymore, and we can’t afford to sit out a political process that we may have grown very cynical over. And in order for us to change course, and change the future, it’s going to take people who haven’t typically been seen or thought of as a typical candidate."

4: She Was Influenced By Other Fearless Women In Politics

In the same interview with The Slot, Ocasio-Cortez said women politicians and organizers like Paula Jean Swearengin, Cori Bush, Linsey Fagan, Lucy Flores, and Ayanna Pressley - who became the first black woman to be elected to the Boston City Council - all paved the way for this moment to happen.

5. She Wants The Immigration And Customs Enforcement Agency (ICE) To Become Extinct

Part of her policies will concern the end of ICE, a government-funded company that's received an increase in a wave of criticism for its enforced regulations on immigration. Ocasio-Cortez's platform was partly influenced by the community members she's encountered of different backgrounds from Ecuador to Pakistan. "...many of them are very scared about what's going on. With my campaign, in terms of immigration, we're trying to say, 'Hey, we've got your back.'" She recently visited one of ICE's detention center's in Texas earlier this month.

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Cardi B Says She's Thinking About Becoming A Politician

Cardi B’s next career move could be politically motivated. The Grammy-winning rapper pondered the idea of going back to school and potentially joining Congress in a series of tweets over the weekend.

“I think I want to be a politician. I really love government even tho I don’t agree with [Government],” Cardi tweeted on Sunday (Jan. 12). “I do feel like if I go back to school and focus up I can be part of Congress. I deada** have sooo much ideas that make sense. I just need a couple of years of school and I can shake the table.”

The political posts triggered a bunch of trolling responses from Trump supporters, but Cardi says she’s open to hearing opinions from different sides of the political spectrum, within reason.

“Every time I post anything political I get [attacked] all type of crazy. If you are a conservative & if you support a opposite party that’s OK ( unless you racist) we can get into friendly debates on here voice your opinion.”

Let me tell you something cause every time I post anything political I get attack all type of crazy .If you are a conservative & if you support a opposite party that’s OK( unless you racist)we can get into friendly debates on here voice your opinion...

— iamcardib (@iamcardib) January 14, 2020

Meanwhile, Cardi already has an endorsement from Sen. Bernie Sanders. The 77-year-old presidential hopeful threw his support behind the Bronx native telling TMZ, “Cardi is deeply concerned about what’s happening in the country. She knows what it's like to live in poverty and struggle, and it would be great for her to bring that experience to politics.”

Sanders tapped Cardi for a campaign video last summer addressing issues such as student loan debt, minimum wage, and climate changes.

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President Donald Trump holds up a memorandum that reinstates sanctions on Iran.
Chip Somodevilla

Everything You Need To Know About Tensions Between Iran And The U.S.

Tension between the U.S. and Iran came to a head on Friday (Jan. 3) after a U.S. drone killed the head of Iran's Quds Force, Qassem Soleimani, and Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, the deputy commander of Iran-backed militia organization, Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF).

The strain between Iran and the U.S. date back to the 1953 overthrow of Iran's Prime Minister Mohammad Mossadegh, and has been ongoing, which resulted in Americans being held hostage at the U.S Embassy for 444 days by Tehran protestors.

In 2013, shortly after Iran's President Hassan Rouhani took office, former President Barack Obama extended an olive branch to Iran. After 30 years of tension, Iran and the U.S. agreed to have diplomatic relations with a long-term nuclear program. However, in 2018, President Donald Trump abandoned the nuclear deal and reinstated sanctions against Iran, including countries that trade with the Western Asia country.

Over the past few months, the tension between Iran and the U.S. continued to escalate. Below is a timeline of events leading to the death of Qassem Soleimani.

BREAKING: Pentagon statement from Defense Secretary @EsperDoD on strike against #Iran’s Soleimani in #Iraq pic.twitter.com/YAuLlkid01

— Tara Copp (@TaraCopp) January 3, 2020

...

Saudi Arabia Oil Attack In September 2019, an oil facility in Saudi Arabia was attacked. Houthi rebels took responsibility for the charge while threatening more onslaught if the country fails to lift its blockade on Yemen.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo blamed Iran for the attack, and Trump instigated the situation by saying that the U.S. was "locked and loaded” and ready to respond with possible military action.

Saudi investigators said the weapons used in the attack came from Iran, but it remains unclear on where the weapons were launched from.

Saudi Arabia oil supply was attacked. There is reason to believe that we know the culprit, are locked and loaded depending on verification, but are waiting to hear from the Kingdom as to who they believe was the cause of this attack, and under what terms we would proceed!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 15, 2019

Iran and U.S. Spies The attacks on the Saudi oil facility came shortly after Iran arrested 17 spies, who were allegedly recruited by the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA).

According to several news reports, spies had been taken into custody, sentencing some to death. Trump, and Pompeo (a former CIA director), said Iran’s claims were false.

The Report of Iran capturing CIA spies is totally false. Zero truth. Just more lies and propaganda (like their shot down drone) put out by a Religious Regime that is Badly Failing and has no idea what to do. Their Economy is dead, and will get much worse. Iran is a total mess!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 22, 2019

The Launch Of Airstrikes Iraqi leaders claimed that the U.S. violated Iraqi sovereignty by killing 24 people in retaliation for the death of an American contractor. The airstrikes also wounded 50 people in addition to the 24 people killed.

The U.S. said the strikes were a response to the more than 30 rockets launched against an Iraqi military base, killing one American and wounding four others.

“In response to repeated Kata'ib Hizbollah attacks on Iraqi bases that host @CJTFOIR forces, U.S. forces conducted precision defensive strikes against 5 KH facilities in Iraq & Syria [to] degrade KH's ability to conduct future attacks against @coalition forces.” [email protected] pic.twitter.com/g2hmTD4Eqw

— OIR Spokesman Col. Myles B. Caggins III (@OIRSpox) December 29, 2019

 

 

March on U.S. Embassy The airstrike came after Pro-Iranian militia members marched on the U.S. Embassy, holding American diplomats hostage for more than 24 hours. President Trump blamed Iran for the protest. The statement also said that "General Soleimani was actively developing plans to attack American diplomats and service members in Iraq and throughout the region.”

"At the direction of the President, the U.S. military has taken decisive defensive action to protect U.S. personnel abroad by killing Qasem Soleimani, the head of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps-Quds Force, a U.S.-designated Foreign Terrorist Organization," the statement reads.

Iran killed an American contractor, wounding many. We strongly responded, and always will. Now Iran is orchestrating an attack on the U.S. Embassy in Iraq. They will be held fully responsible. In addition, we expect Iraq to use its forces to protect the Embassy, and so notified!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 31, 2019

Iraqis — Iraqis — dancing in the street for freedom; thankful that General Soleimani is no more. pic.twitter.com/huFcae3ap4

— Secretary Pompeo (@SecPompeo) January 3, 2020

The Killing of Qassem Soleimani An American drone hit two cars carrying Qassem Suleimani and other officials backed by Iranian militias as they were leaving the Baghdad International Airport.

The U.S. Department of Defense confirmed Soleimani's death in a statement by calling the murder "decisive defensive action." Trump tweeted a picture of the American flag, insinuating a victory for America.

pic.twitter.com/VXeKiVzpTf

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 3, 2020

 

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Democratic presidential candidate , U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA) speaks during the Nevada Democrats' "First in the West" event at Bellagio Resort & Casino on November 17, 2019 in Las Vegas, Nevada. The Nevada Democratic presidential caucuses is scheduled for February 22, 2020.
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Sen. Kamala Harris Exits 2020 Presidential Race

In a wave of shocking news on Tuesday (Dec. 3), Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) announced her plan to exit the race for the Democratic presidential nomination, The Atlantic's staff writer Edward-Isaac Dovere reports.

In a memo to her team and supporters, Harris noted that her campaign lacked "the financial resources" needed to successfully continue a bid for the presidency. "It is with deep regret—but also with deep gratitude—that I am suspending my campaign today. But I want to be clear with you: I am still very much in this fight," Harris wrote. The announcement arrives nearly a year since Harris began her presidential run in Oakland, Calif., in January, Buzzfeed News notes.

Harris is the latest politician to drop out of the presidential election race, following Gov. Steve Bullock (D-Montana) and Rep. Joe Sestak (D-Penn.). According to The Huffington Post, one of Harris' staffers said, "I don't think anyone on my team was expecting this."

In a bolded portion of her memo, which was published on Medium, Harris assured supporters that her quest to have Donald Trump face the consequences of his actions will still continue. "And I want to be clear: although I am no longer running for President, I will do everything in my power to defeat Donald Trump and fight for the future of our country and the best of who we are."

To my supporters, it is with deep regret—but also with deep gratitude—that I am suspending my campaign today.

But I want to be clear with you: I will keep fighting every day for what this campaign has been about. Justice for the People. All the people.https://t.co/92Hk7DHHbR

— Kamala Harris (@KamalaHarris) December 3, 2019

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