Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez promotes anti-Poverty legislation

by NPR
September 25, 2019

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., on Wednesday unveiled a package of anti-poverty proposals to give more people — including undocumented immigrants — access to federal benefits like Medicaid.

The bills — packaged as a bundle called “A Just Society” — would expand access to benefits by updating the federal poverty line to include expenses like child care and Internet access and be adjusted based on where someone lives. About 40 million Americans live in poverty, according to the U.S. Census.

“I think one of the things that that we can get done is build popular support in acknowledging how bad the problem already is. In doing so we can actually begin to fundamentally address those problems,” Ocasio-Cortez told NPR’s Steve Inskeep. “If we can acknowledge how many Americans are actually in poverty I think that we can start to address some of the more systemic issues in our economy.”

She spoke to NPR Tuesday ahead of a closed-door afternoon meeting of the Democratic Caucus, where House Speaker Nancy Pelosi confirmed plans to launch an impeachment inquiry. Calls among Democrats for impeachment have grown recently as reporting emerged that President Trump allegedly pressured the Ukrainian leader to investigate political rival Joe Biden.

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