Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., blasted President Trump following his primetime address from the Oval Office on Tuesday night.
Appearing on MSNBC, Ocasio-Cortez accused Trump of “holding the paychecks of everyday Americans hostage” during the partial government shutdown in order to fulfill what she called a “campaign fantasy.”
“In the actual address, there was falsehood after falsehood and we have to make sure that we get our facts straight. Everyday immigrants commit crimes at a far lower rate than native-born Americans,” Ocasio-Cortez told MSNBC host Rachel Maddow. “And not only that but the women and children on the border seeking refuge and opportunity in the U.S. with nothing but the shirt on their backs are acting more American than any person who seeks to keep them out ever will be.”
Ocasio-Cortez also made reference to the children who have died while in U.S. border patrol custody.
“Right now what we are seeing is the violation of human rights,” she said. “These children and these families are being held in … basically freezing boxes that no person should be maintained in for any amount of time let alone the amount of time they are being kept on.”
The congresswoman insisted that Trump has a “proven track record of discrimination against anybody who’s really non-white” in the United States and pointed to the “insane amount of dysfunction” that has led to people feeling “unsafe.”
“No one should feel unsafe in the United States of America and that includes our amazing and beautiful and productive immigrant community. And moreover, the one thing that the president has not talked about is the fact that he has systematically engaged in the violation of international human rights on our border,” Ocasio-Cortez continued. “He has separated children from their families … The president should not be asking for more money to an agency that has systematically violated human rights. The president should be really defending why we are funding such an agency at all because right now, what we are seeing is death.”
During the address, Trump described a “humanitarian and security crisis” on the border, as he made his case for border wall funding. He cited the flow of drugs and criminals – underscoring cases of Americans killed by illegal immigrants.
“How much more American blood must be shed before Congress does its job?" Trump said.