On Tuesday, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who identifies as a democratic socialist, officially became the youngest woman elected to the U.S. Congress, with over 75 percent of the vote.
During the midterm elections, Ocasio-Cortez handsomely defeated her Republican counterpart, economics Professor Anthony Pappas.
“I am so thankful for every single person who contributed, amplified, and worked to establish this movement. Never forget the hard work it took to get us here,” Ocasio-Cortez, who kept her campaign efforts active until the polls closed, stated.
The 29-year-old latina won the race in New York’s 14th Congressional District, with over 75 percent of the vote. The congresswoman first became popular after defeating Democratic Representative Joe Crowley, the fourth-ranking House Democrat, earlier in 2018.
Some of the issues which featured prominently on Ocasio-Cortez’ campaign were abolishing the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency (ICE) building, a guarantee for federal jobs, a universal Medicaid platform, gun control, a US$15 minimum wage and free college tuition.
The congresswoman’s campaign is characteristically unorthodox within the Democratic camp, notably for challenging her party’s approach to campaign finance: she did not rely on big party donors.
Ocasio-Cortez has been instrumental in garnering support for her fellow Democratic running mates. She traveled to places like Kansas and California to rally support and as part of an effort to push the party towards the left spectrum.
Before entering office in 2018, Ocasio-Cortez worked for Democratic Senator Bernie Sanders, as an organizer during his presidential campaign.