Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez lands Time cover: From 'dorky kid' to 'The Phenom'

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has reached another impressive milestone in her young political career.

Rep. Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., is set to be the cover star of Time Magazine’s April 1 edition, with a story titled: “'Change Is Closer Than We Think.' Inside Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez's Unlikely Rise.”

The freshman Democrat, described as “The Phenom” on the famed magazine’s cover, has been ever-present since she beat longtime congressman Joe Crowley in the 2018 elections.

“This is the daily reality for America’s newest human Rorschach test. Wonder Woman of the left, Wicked Witch of the right, Ocasio-Cortez has become the second most talked-about politician in America, after the President of the United States,” the story, written by Charlotte Alter, reads.

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“Ocasio-Cortez represents one vision of the Democratic Party’s future. She’s a young Hispanic woman, three cornerstones of the party’s electoral coalition. She’s a democratic socialist at a time when confidence in capitalism is declining, especially among progressive millennials.

“She’s a political phenomenon: part activist, part legislator, arguably the best storyteller in the party since Barack Obama and perhaps the only Democrat right now with the star power to challenge President Donald Trump’s.”

In the 3,600-word piece, the 29-year-old talks how she went from being a “‘dorky kid’ who once asked for a microscope for her birthday,” what it was like being “born into a working-class family in the Parkchester section of the Bronx,” and the struggle of living “paycheck to paycheck” in her 20s.

Ocasio-Cortez also spoke to the author about the student-loan “crisis”, cynicism, alleged generational divides within her party, and joked that she “misses being able to go outside in sweats”.

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Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez was dubbed "The Phenom" on the cover of Time.

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez was dubbed "The Phenom" on the cover of Time. (TIME)

The freshman Democrat’s rise to fame was charted in a new survey that found Ocasio-Cortez’s name recognition is growing compared to that of other politicians at the same point in their careers in Congress.

More surveyed people know the New York Democrat than they knew Sens. Elizabeth Warren, Marco Rubio or Ted Cruz as freshmen.

Since September, Ocasio-Cortez became more widely recognized across the country, with half of the respondents saying they have never heard of her before. Now only a fifth of surveyed people says they aren’t familiar with the self-described Democratic socialist.

The Gallup poll released Friday shows that Ocasio-Cortez's unfavorable rating has risen by 15 points since last September, when she had yet to win the general election, increasing from 26 percent to 41 percent of the American adults polled.

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She has also managed to increase her favorability rating, but only by 7 points. About 31 percent of surveyed people view her favorably, compared to 24 percent in September.

Overall, the results suggest that Ocasio-Cortez may be a polarizing figure. Most of her support is galvanized around younger, more diverse Democrat-leaning groups, while most of her opposition is composed of Republicans and more conservative Democrat-leaning groups.

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She’s also favored by adults 18 to 34, people of color and women. Yet she’s facing a favorability deficit among men (-24), whites (-24), and adults 55 or older (-22).

Among self-described independents, she has a negative net rating of 5 percent.

Fox News' Lukas Mikelionis contributed to this report.