Activist state

State Senator Ramos slams fellow Democrat AOC on Twitter

State Senator Jessica Ramos took to Twitter to slam Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a fellow Democrat, for missing her district. But a spokesperson for the MP’s campaign said they recently approached the senator to arrange a meeting and were turned down.

It all started when a medical student, who uses the Twitter account @jai_lies, took to Twitter to claim that Ocasio-Cortez staff had canceled a meeting with two health policy experts. AOC staff say they have not yet been able to find a record of that meeting.

But AOC quickly responded by tweeting “So sorry to hear this happened. This is not representative of me or my values. If you can connect with details I would appreciate it. I will follow up so DMs will be open.”

It was then that things changed.

Ramos then jumped into the conversation to say: “Maybe if you spent more time in your office and with your team you would know what’s going on. Suffice to say it would be nice if you breathed our air. “

A similar criticism AOC once used against Rep. Joe Crowley before AOC beat him in the 2018 primary.

“This is Senator Ramos basically putting a stake in the ground and saying this is how I’m going to categorize AOC and its staff and that sends a message, very public, to both its supporters and the media.” , Basil Smikle, director of public policy at Hunter College and former executive director of the New York Democratic Party.

Ramos and AOC beat two establishment Democrats in 2018 and then came together to promote progressive ideologies, although there have been disagreements on some policy points recently. Their districts overlap in parts of Queens.

A well-known New York housing activist also took to Twitter to back up claims that the AOC can be hard to reach.

“I’ve contacted his office multiple times about housing voucher discrimination in his district – to no avail,” tweeted Aaron Carr, director of the Housing Rights Initiative. “Last year we filed a major lawsuit against a # of businesses doing business in his neighborhood on behalf of tenants of color/homeless people.”

Ramos also tweeted, “I haven’t spoken to my congressman in months. Maybe over a year? What else am I supposed to do?”

But Smikle said with the scale of the AOC’s influence, some local officials may still feel left out.

“There are a lot of people who would like their leadership to be more local and more accessible, but she really took a national leadership position,” Smikle said. “This popularity helps him deliver for his home.”

An AOC spokesperson pushed back against Ramos’ claims that AOC is absent from his district, saying AOC held an outreach meeting in Jackson Heights as recently as July 6 and has held 6 town halls so far. This year.

The senator and congresswoman also saw each other recently at a May Day rally and a few weeks prior at a petition event in Astoria.

The AOC spokesperson said he offered the senator a meeting with the congresswoman in April, but the senator was unavailable that day.

Ramos’ colleagues in the Senate have also taken to Twitter in support of the AOC, with Senator Jabari Brisport even tweeting a photo of Ramos campaigning with the AOC in March.

“Maybe she is preparing for a primary challenge against the AOC or she is feeling some pressure from members of the DSA (Democratic Socialists of America), to which the AOC belongs, to challenge her in a primary,” says Smikle. “So somehow I think she’s trying to organize herself to make sure she has a relatively safe seat.”

Ramos said on Twitter that she does not plan to challenge AOC in a primary.

Ramos did not return a request for comment.