Feuding politicians: AOC and Ted Cruz go back and forth on pressing issues

Lauren Guinn, Opinion Editor

Texas Senator Ted Cruz and New York District 14 Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (AOC) have gone back and forth over how to handle the aftermath of the winter storm that ripped through Texas the week of February 13th as well as other important events. 

Cruz and AOC are both outspoken politicians on their respective sides of the spectrum. Cruz is known as a staunch conservative republican while AOC is known for being the one of the most left-leaning and progressive public servants in office.

Recently a conflict between them ignited over what seemed to be an agreement. When the Robinhood app was getting a lot of attention for stopping trading of certain stocks AOC used Twitter to voice her opinion that Robinhood was wrong in their decision to block retail investors from purchasing stock. 

Cruz simply responded, “Fully agree.” To which garnered a response from AOC in which she found fault in his response. “I am happy to work with Republicans on this issue where there’s common ground, but you almost had me murdered 3 weeks ago so you can sit this one out,” she tweeted. “Happy to work w/ almost any other GOP that aren’t trying to get me killed. In the meantime if you want to help, you can resign.”

AOC is referencing the January 6th storming of the capital, when a capital rioter, who is now facing five federal charges, allegedly tweeted that he wanted to “assassinate” her. She later asked Cruz to be held accountable for the role she believed he played in the insurrection instead of moving on like he wanted.

For two people who hold such opposite ideals, it is no surprise that they will go back and forth on the things they disagree about. However, this hostility is somewhat unusual. 

History teacher Jeff Meyers shared his knowledge about political disagreements of the past. “From a historical perspective, I suspect the Caning of Charles Sumner was worse — but that happened in 1856,” he said. “Honestly, within the last two decades the divide between the two parties has grown exponentially in my opinion. It feels like the last time we had any bipartisanship was right after 9/11.”

Senior Ceely Patramanis, however, does not find the feud surprising. “ I think that the feud is relatively expected between two politicians with such opposing views. I am not necessarily surprised with the actions that have occurred from it, as I believe they show their character pretty spot on,” she elaborated.

After the winter storm caused many households to be stuck without power and, in some cases, heat, Cruz left Texas to travel to Cancun, Mexico. This decision was met with criticism from many of his constituents and peers, AOC being one of the most outspoken critics. 

Instead of vocalizing her opinion, AOC decided she would take action to help Texans while Cruz was absent. She created a fund that people could donate to with the purpose of helping struggling Texans after the storm. She raised over $2 million by the time she traveled to Houston to continue her efforts and has now raised over $5 million.  

Some think that AOC created her fund in spite of Cruz’s decision to leave Texas in a time of need, however, Patramanis disagrees and believes that AOC’s endeavor to help get money to those in need had no ulterior motives. 

I think AOC was taking initiative to provide help to those in need,” Patramanis explained. “Personally, I do not think she even has Ted Cruz in mind while helping others, as it seems to be in her nature to help. She saw people struggling and she is doing everything she can to help them.”

No matter what her true motives were, as a politician, members of the public will always have their own assumptions about her actions.

AOC and Cruz are not expected by many to agree, but some find the hostility of their feud surprising and uncommon historically while the behavior does not shock others. Whether it is fighting for what they believe in or simply political gain, they both are extremely vocal and stand up for what they believe in.