“In November, I’m going to be voting for Joe Biden,” she said, responding to a question about her intent posed by the rapper.
“I’ve been saying this whole time that we got to support the Democratic nominee,” she continued, adding: “This is the time where I’m saying it declaratively like this.”
Ocasio-Cortez served as a prominent surrogate for Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), Biden’s main challenger in this year’s race for the Democratic presidential nomination. Sanders endorsed Biden on April 13, less than a week after he exited the race.
Earlier in April, Biden’s bid to unify his party included embracing aspects of the progressive agenda, announcing his support for canceling student debt for a large portion of Americans who make less than $125,000 a year and calling for repeal of a law that tightened the rules for filing for bankruptcy ― a measure he once championed.
But on the same day as Sanders’ endorsement, Ocasio-Cortez told The New York Times she thought Biden’s policy overtures to progressives at that point had been inadequate.
“There’s this talk about unity as this kind of vague, kumbaya, kind of term,” she said. “Unity and unifying isn’t a feeling, it’s a process. And what I hope does not happen in this process is that everyone just tries to shoo it along and brush real policies ... under the rug as an aesthetic difference of style.”
The lawmaker mentioned health care, climate change and immigration reform as specific policy areas she’d like Biden to address.
“I’ve always said that I will support the Democratic nominee,” she said. “But unity is a process, and figuring out what that looks like is part of this whole conversation” among progressives and the Biden camp.
Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Biden’s other main progressive challenger in the presidential race, announced her endorsement of the presumptive nominee on April 15.
Biden “is committed to the fight for social, racial and economic justice,” Warren said. “Now it’s up to all of us to help make Joe Biden the next president of the United States.”