Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) appeared unfazed by Trump supporters chanting “AOC sucks” at a Grand Rapids, Michigan, rally Thursday, chiding her critics for targeting her with the insult.
Before President Donald Trump spoke to the attendees, his son Donald Trump Jr. took the stage and claimed that Ocasio-Cortez was barely aware of how the U.S. government operates, a reference to her misspeaking in a video last year.
“Think about the fact that every mainstream leading Democratic contender is taking the advice of a freshman congresswoman who three weeks ago didn’t know the three branches of government,” he said. “I don’t know about you guys, but that’s pretty scary.”
The audience then launched into the chant as Don Jr. stood watching and laughing, before telling the hecklers, “You’re not very nice.”
Ocasio-Cortez chalked the reaction to haters simply looking for a female to attack.
“You know this is part of a pattern that the right and the far-right and, frankly, the president is consistent with,” she told CNN on Friday. “He doesn’t have another woman ― Hillary Clinton or whomever else ― to vilify anymore, so they need to find another woman to kind of prop up and become a lightning rod.”
The congresswoman has made waves in Washington, particularly with her promotion of the Green New Deal, an aggressive economic and environmental action plan on climate change vehemently opposed by the right.
On Friday, Ocasio-Cortez took part in an MSNBC town hall discussion in which she advocated for the deal and even defended a Republican who was called a “moron” by an audience member for not supporting it.
“Hey, hey, hey, hey. That’s unacceptable,” she said, calling her anti-bullying approach the difference between her and the president.