OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author's opinion.
A House Oversight Committee hearing went insane when a witness and a Republican representative butted heads.
It happened on Thursday when Republican Rep. Clay Higgins and environmental attorney Raya Salter raised their voices to each other in an argument about petrochemical products and then Democrat New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez got involved.
“Everything you have, your clothes, your glasses, the car. You got her on your phone, the table you sit in the chair, the carpet under your feet. Everything you’ve got is petrochemical products. What would you do with that? Tell the world,” the representative said to the attorney.
“If I had that power in the world. What? Actually, I don’t need that power. Because what I would do is ask you, sir, from Louisiana,” the attorney began to say before Higgins interrupted and said, “I’m giving you the power.”
“You, sir. You, sir, from Louisiana,” the attorney said, interrupting the representative. “Should search your heart and understand why the EPA knows that toxic petrochemical facilities are some of the most toxic polluting facilities in the world and are killing Black people throughout Louisiana. So my wish to be with you, to search your heart and ask your God what you are doing to the black people.”
The representative then went on to speak using religion.
“Like from a biblical perspective, we were given, we were given the Lord gave us dominion over the planet and the creatures thereof. Now, the original translations of ‘dominion’ means to care for and nurture. So from a biblical perspective, I am an environmentalist. I love my planet and the people and the creatures thereof. Do you?” the representative said.
“Sir. If we’re going to talk about, if we’re going to talk about the Lord. I ask that you search your heart again and think about repenting,” the attorney said.
“The fossil fuel industry that owns your state is destroying the earth and the natural world. And that is a fact, sir,” she said.
“You know what you got, young lady? You got a lot of noise, but you got no answers,” the representative said.
— Acyn (@Acyn) September 15, 2022
And it was that comment that got the attention of Rep. Ocasio-Cortez who was furious.
“I wanted to address Ms. Salter directly. I just want you to know that in the 4 years that I’ve sat on this committee, I have never seen members of Congress — Republican or Democrat — disrespect a witness in the way that I have seen them disrespect you today. I do not care what party they are in. I’ve never seen anything like that. And for the gentleman from Louisiana, and the comfort that he felt in yelling at you like that, there’s more than one way to get a point across. Frankly, men who treat women like that in public, I fear how they treat them in private! We can be better than this. We don’t have to resort to yelling,” she said.
AOC: Men who treat women like that in public, I fear how they treat them in private… pic.twitter.com/Jji1V2XhT2
— Acyn (@Acyn) September 15, 2022
“But because I don’t believe he will,” she said. “I want to apologize to you about the conduct of this committee and what we just witnessed. The people do not deserve to see that, and we deserve to put forward a better front.”
Last week, the lawmaker known as “AOC” was talking about her political career and what my be on her horizon as well as that of her party when she was asked if either she or someone like her could ever be elected president.
She responded in an interview with GQ that while “anything is possible,” in her experience in Congress thus far she has seen that “so many people in this country hate women,”
“People ask me questions about the future,” she said. “And realistically, I can’t even tell you if I’m going to be alive in September. And that weighs very heavily on me.”
She also said that “misogyny transcends political ideology” while also claiming she has gotten a lot of hate from some beyond the far right of the political spectrum.
GQ’s puff piece on AOC begins: “Almost four years after her improbable arrival in Washington, Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has become the political voice of a generation—and a cultural star whose power transcends politics. Now, as the country hurtles toward the midterm elections, AOC opens up about the battle over abortion, her own shot at the presidency, and why it’s critical that men step up now.”