AOC and Ilk Trying to Force Biden’s Hand on War
It’s more evidence of a broken Democratic Party.
In direct defiance of his current policy toward the war and as early voting in the midterm elections has already started in some places, 30 House Democrats, including AOC and her Squad, sent a letter to President Joe Biden urging him to engage in direct talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin to put an end to the war in Ukraine.
In addition to bilateral talks, signatories to the letter, initiated by Progressive Congressional Caucus chair Rep. Pramila Jayapal, D-Wash., along with Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and 28 others, urged the White House to support a mutual ceasefire and diplomatic efforts to avoid a protracted war that threatens more human suffering and spiraling global inflation, as well as nuclear war “through intention or miscalculation.”
Despite Biden’s recent acknowledgment that we have never been “closer to nuclear Armageddon since the 1962 Cuban missile crisis,” Biden has not met with Putin since Russia invaded Ukraine on Feb. 24, and he recently told the press he will refuse to meet with Putin next month when the two attend the G20 summit in Bali.
In addition to Jayapal, 29 Democratic members of Congress signed the letter, including such prominent progressives and liberals as Cori Bush of Missouri, André Carson of Indiana, Peter DeFazio of Oregon, Jesús “Chuy” García of Illinois, Raúl Grijalva of Arizona, Sheila Jackson Lee of Texas, Ro Khanna of California, Barbara Lee of California, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, Mark Pocan of Wisconsin, Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts, Jamie Raskin of Maryland and Rashida Tlaib of Michigan.
In the letter, Jayapal, AOC, and the other members urge the president “to pair the military and economic support the United States has provided to Ukraine with a proactive diplomatic push, redoubling efforts to seek a realistic framework for a ceasefire.”
The key words here are “has provided” as opposed to “will provide,” implying that the signators to the letter may be breaking with most other Democrats and will oppose future weapons transfers.
In response to some heated backlash from others in her party to that implication, Jayapal issued a clarification, saying that she and her colleagues “advocated for the administration to continue ongoing military and economic support for Ukrainians while pursuing diplomatic support,” even though the letter doesn’t exactly say that.