She’s a medical journalist and former publicist with no political background, but Bronx native Ruth Papazian, 61, sees it as her duty – however much a long shot – to swipe the seat of 29-year-old Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez in the 2020 congressional elections.
“It became clear that if I didn't step up to fight for our district, we'd end up with yet another passive Republican candidate who didn't bother to campaign,” Papazian told Fox News. “And Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez hasn't lived in the district since early childhood. Those of us who stuck it out, and actually live here, care about our future, and need representation.”
Ocasio-Cortez used her deceased father’s Bronx condo on her voter registration since 2012, but has since denied reports that she doesn’t live in the Manhattan borough.
Meanwhile, Papazian – the daughter of Egyptian immigrants who currently lives with her widowed mother – has accused the headline-making freshman representative of never responding to concerned people in the district “who have serious questions about her unrealistic and unworkable policies,” and claims that she “has a mostly unstaffed office in Queens, and when constituents call her office in DC to ask for help, they get phone recordings with full message boxes.”
But for this Bronx Republican, it is the incumbent’s economic policies that are the driving force behind her own political aspirations.
“It has been galling listening to Ocasio-Cortez push really hackneyed big government ideas that have failed around the world. These include her Green New Deal and Medicare for all,” Papazian said. “This district is home to first and second-generation immigrants. It is a middle-class district, because our families came here, worked hard, bought houses, and flourished. Many of us come from families that escaped socialism. No one wants it here.”
And as Papazian fears, some U.S. businesses also view the Ocasio-Cortez-led socialist economic plug as a possibility rather than a delusional fantasy.
Independent retailer Metals.com last month surveyed more than 100,000 of its members across the country to gather insights on the attitudes and behaviors of U.S. retirees aged 60 and over, with some 91.5 percent labeling the Democrat party “as more socialist” since the 2018 election.
“As Democrats control the House, they are becoming openly bold about socialist programs – like Medicare for All, confiscatory tax rates for top earners and a Green New Deal, their hard-left turn is no longer a matter for discernment,” said Metals Vice President Deric Scott.
A Gallup poll last year found that more Democrats – some 57 percent – now have a more “positive” view of the word socialism than they did ten years ago amid the financial collapse.
Papazian insists there is nothing optimistic about what her area’s representative is promoting.
“Ocasio-Cortez seems to have zero understanding of how our economy works to create the relative wealth and comfort people have made for themselves and their families. The Whitestone Bridge connects the East Bronx and Northwest Queens portions of the district. Her policies are literally a threat to our way of life,” Papazian said. “Montefiore Hospital is the biggest employer in the Bronx part, and her Medicare for All plans would bankrupt them. Tens of thousands of well-paid healthcare workers would be out of work.”
She also argued that Jet Blue and the airports are the biggest employers in the Queens part of the Ocasio-Cortez district and that her Green New Deal, “which would get rid of air travel, would make tens of thousands of well-paid avionics workers jobless.”
Papazian said that she has established an “exploratory committee” to begin crafting her running plans, and will file her official papers with the Federal Election Commission in the next few months. She also noted that the issues she intends to run on are centered on “pro-growth tax policies for economic diversity, affordable private health insurance, border control as a national security issue, less government intrusion and regulation, strong defense and fewer wars” and the local matter of fixing the “crumbling roads and subway system” rather than bolstering the cost for vehicles heading into Manhattan as part of the Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo-backed push for a 2021 “congestion tax.”
And while she is a rookie when it comes to an office run, Papazian is no newcomer when it comes to stymying political correctness and niceties. On her Facebook page, Papazian takes almost daily aim at Ocasio-Cortez – whom she refers to as the “Bronx Bolshevik” – illuminating her policies with both dismay and derision, lambasting the young Democrat for everything from failing to respond to her constituency and adequately staff her office, to her “reality show” struggles to set up IKEA furniture while the people in her district are left languishing amid real-life struggles, to suggesting she move to the ravaged socialist nation of Venezuela.
“Seeing her in action, my shock turned to indignation at this takeover of an office that exists to meet our needs,” Papazian added.
A spokesperson for Ocasio-Cortez did not immediately respond to a request for comment, but her representatives have previously stated that they “welcome” competition and Democratic values.