Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York contradicted herself saying her proposed “Green New Deal” both is and is not a “massive government takeover.”
The congresswoman’s resolution calls for “a new national social, industrial and economic mobilization on a scale not seen since World War II and the New Deal.”
Fox News reported the plan envisions “a sprawling government expansion that would dwarf FDR’s New Deal” during the 1930s, with the stated goal of transitioning the United States to 100 percent renewable energy, and net-zero carbon emissions by 2030.
To achieve to goal, the Green New Deal mandates the replacement of airplanes with high-speed trains, the rebuilding or retrofitting of all buildings in the country to new green standards, and the elimination of all combustion-engine vehicles.
Ocasio-Cortez also included some of her favorite government social programs in the resolution such as free universal healthcare and college education, government guaranteed employment, and paid family and medical leave, as well as economic security for “all who are unable or unwilling to work,” Bloomberg reported.
On Thursday, MSNBC host Chuck Todd asked Ocasio-Cortez how she envisioned paying for the Green New Deal.
“One way that the Right does try to mischaracterize what we’re doing as though it’s like some kind of massive government takeover,” she responded.
“Uh, obviously what we’re trying to do is, well obviously it’s not that because what we’re trying to do is release the investments from the federal government to mobilize those resources across the country.”
AOC tonight: “One way the Right tries to mischaracterize what we’re doing as though it’s like some kind of massive government takeover…obviously it’s not”
AOC this morning on if her plan requires “massive government intervention”: “It does…Yeah, I have no problem saying that” pic.twitter.com/IDRpeLIrwg
— Ryan Saavedra (@RealSaavedra) February 8, 2019
However, on Friday morning, NPR’s Steve Inskeep said to Ocasio-Cortez, “As you know, congresswoman, one reason that people who are politically conservative are skeptical of efforts to combat climate change is that it sounds to them like it requires massive government intervention which they just don’t like.”
“Are you prepared to put on the table that yes, they’re actually right, what this requires is massive government intervention?” the radio host asked.
“It does,” Ocasio-Cortez responded. “It does. Yeah, I have no problem saying that.”
According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, about 11 percent of the country’s total energy consumption currently comes from renewable sources. Examples include solar, wind, hydroelectric, ocean tides and geothermal.
In addition to renewable, the current sources of U.S. energy are petroleum (37 percent), natural gas (29 percent), coal (14 percent), and nuclear (9 percent).
Ocasio-Cortez shared a document concerning the Green New Deal which indicated the government would play a “big role” in making the plan possible because the private sector does not have the necessary funds.
“The level of investment required will be massive,” it reads. “Even if all the billionaires and companies came together and were willing to pour all the resources at their disposal into this investment, the aggregate value of the investments they could make would not be sufficient.”
Many people ask what a Green New Deal entails.
We are calling for a wartime-level, just economic mobilization plan to get to 100% renewable energy ASAP.
To read more, check out https://t.co/kzlXUIk0Dg – that’s our resolution text. Read Section #6 for our detailed scope & scale.
— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) January 2, 2019
The representative’s document says the government can finance the project through deficit spending and the Federal Reserve printing new money.
“In the same ways that we paid for the 2008 bank bailout and extended quantitative easing programs, the same ways we paid for World War II and many other wars,” she wrote. “The Federal Reserve can extend credit to power these projects and investments, new public banks can be created (as in WWII) to extend credit and a combination of various taxation tools (including taxes on carbon and other emissions and progressive wealth taxes) can be employed.”
The Washington Examiner’s Philip Klein contended the Green New Deal would far outstrip the costs of President Franklin Roosevelt’s New Deal in the 1930s at $653 billion and World War II in the 1940s at $3.3 trillion in 2009 dollars.
The New Deal established multiple regulatory agencies and built several public works projects, including various buildings, parks, dams, and electrical power facilities.
Ocasio-Cortez’s suggestion that the Green New Deal could be financed like the 2008 bailout is not a realistic comparison.
The entire Troubled Asset Relief Program or TARP was about $632 billion, which was paid back with interest to the Treasury, with an inflow of cash of $728.5 billion, according to ProPublica.
However, the purpose of the bailout was to allow banks and other companies to keep their doors open, so they could return to profitability in the businesses they were involved with — not to build government-directed projects geared toward improving the environment that would not necessarily be money makers.
Noah Smith, writing for Bloomberg, tallied up the Green New Deal’s costs — including its new proposed entitlement programs — to be about $6.6 trillion per year.
The government is projected to spend $4.4 trillion total during the 2019 fiscal year, according to the Congressional Budget Office.
The Daily Wire’s editor-in-chief Ben Shapiro tore the New York lawmaker’s plan to shreds in a piece titled, “AOC’s Green New Deal Proposal Is One Of The Stupidest Documents Ever Written.”
“Whoever wrote the proposal is, to put it kindly, dense. Idiotic. Moronic,” Shapiro wrote. “Even Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) found herself unable to pretend to take it seriously; she said she hadn’t seen it yet, but ‘it’s enthusiastic and I appreciate the enthusiasm.’”
“This, not coincidentally, is precisely what I say when I find out that my 2-year-old son has used his magic markers on his bedroom wall,” he continued. “When Nancy Pelosi has to pat you on the head and tell you that your picture of a doggie — which, for the record, looks like a blob with three legs and a spaghetti sauce stain — is just great honey, you’re in trouble.”
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