POLITICS
01/06/2019 06:16 am ET Updated Jan 07, 2019

Steve Scalise Feuds With Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Over 'Radical Followers' On Twitter

The tit-for-tat began after Scalise claimed Democrats want to waste taxes on "leftist fantasy programs.”

In a Twitter feud sparked by Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s (D-N.Y.) call for hefty taxes on rich Americans to fund the Green New Deal, House Minority Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.) bashed the freshman congresswoman for her “radical” following.

The tit-for-tat began Saturday after Scalise, citing Ocasio-Cortez’s upcoming “60 Minutes” interview, claimed one distinction between the left and right was the desire to “let Americans keep more of their own hard-earned money” versus the idea of giving away taxpayer incomes “to leftist fantasy programs.”

To clarify, Ocasio-Cortez’s suggested plan is to make the top marginal tax rate as high as 70 percent for Americans making more than $10 million a year to finance the GND. That deal would embrace renewable energy and cut back on greenhouse gasses, among other initiatives. 

While the proposal drew mockery from Scalise, Ocasio-Cortez defended it, hitting back at the Republican and asking: “How do you not know how marginal tax rates work?

“Oh that’s right, almost forgot: GOP works for the corporate CEOs showering themselves in multi-million bonuses; not the actual working people whose wages + healthcare they’re ripping off for profit.”

Shifting the focus of the back-and-forth to the remarks of other Twitter users, Scalise posted screenshots of responses like “snipe his ass” and “kick his cane,” using them to argue the congresswoman has a crazed band of supporters.

“Happy to continue this debate on the Floor of the People’s House, but it’s clearly not productive to engage here with some of your radical followers,” he wrote in the early hours of Sunday morning, adding ”#StayClassy.”

Ocasio-Cortez’s tax plan might seem unreasonable to Scalise, but it received support from The New York Times’ Paul Krugman, who wrote a column Saturday in which he pointed out that it’s backed by “only ignorant people like … um, Peter Diamond, Nobel laureate in economics and arguably the world’s leading expert on public finance.”

Krugman then slammed those partaking in a “constant effort to portray her as flaky and ignorant,” contending that “on the tax issue she’s just saying what good economists say.”

Ocasio-Cortez’s interview is set to air Sunday evening on CBS.

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