U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez had a few words to say about President Trump on Wednesday evening as she was leaving the Capitol in Washington – mostly about what Trump should be doing about climate change.
“He needs to get his act together,” the New York Democrat and co-author of the Green New Deal said when approached by a reporter from TMZ. “He needs to stand up to the fossil fuel corporations and the fossil fuel industry. He has to stand up to Big Oil, to Big Gas … but I think he’s in their pocket.”
Trump and other Republicans have argued that many efforts undertaken by climate activists have called for unnecessary or costly regulations. In addition, the president has long voiced support for the nation’s coal industry, and last June the Environmental Protection Agency finalized a plan to roll back emissions rules for the industry that were implemented by the Obama administration.
Earlier in the brief conversation, Ocasio-Cortez spoke about the “horrifying” fires raging across Australia and used that as a jumping-off point for broader comments about climate change in general – even though nearly 200 arson-related arrests in Australia since the start of wildfire season have raised doubts about how many blazes were the result of climate change.
“I’m going to live in a world that’s fundamentally altered by climate change. So is Greta [Thunberg, the teenage climate activist from Sweden], so is every young person,” she told TMZ.
“The younger you are,” she added, “the more of our lives and our futures are going to be impacted by this.”
She argued that many young adults have become anxious about whether to have children, given issues related to climate change.
“Just because we want to make sure we’re bringing our kids into a healthy world, and a stable future,” she said.
Ocasio-Cortez’s Green New Deal is a multitrillion-dollar proposal that she claims would reduce carbon emissions while also boosting the economy.
In November, she and Sen. Bernie Sanders, whom Ocasio-Cortez has endorsed for president, unveiled what they called the Green New Deal for Public Housing, covering topics such as solar panels and community gardens.