On Tuesday morning, Representative-elect Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and more than two-hundred youth activists, stormed the office of House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi demanding Democrats do more to act on climate change issues.
According to reporting from Politico, Capitol Police started arresting the protesters when they refused to leave after a few hours of protesting outside of Pelosi’s office.
Protest organizers claimed nearly fifty people were arrested as Pelosi said she welcomed the protest and urged the police to “allow them to continue to organize and participate in our democracy.”
Representative-elect Ocasio-Cortez, who left before the Capitol Police started arresting the protesters, said she was there to support the protesters while encouraging Pelosi to listen to their demands.
Ocasio-Cortez has still not yet said publicly whether she will back Pelosi for the speaker of the house when Democrats hold leadership elections later this month.
“We need a Green New Deal and we need to get to 100 percent renewables because our lives depend on it,” Ocasio-Cortez said. “The IPCC themselves, they say we have 10 years left and I — not just as an elected member, but as a 29-year-old woman — am thinking not just about what we are going to accomplish in the next two years but the America that we’re going to live in in the next 30 years.”
On Tuesday morning Pelosi welcomed the protesters and said she is planning to address climate change by relaunching a special committee and including climate-related proposals in an infrastructure bill.
“We are inspired by the energy and activism of the many young activists and advocates leading the way on the climate crisis, which threatens the health, economic security and futures of all our communities,” Pelosi said in a statement. “I have recommended to my House Democratic colleagues that we reinstate a select committee to address the climate crisis. House Democrats ran on and won on our bold campaign for a $1 trillion investment in our infrastructure that will make our communities more resilient to the climate crisis, while creating 16 million new good-paying jobs across the country.”
(Written & Edited by Bart Charles Begley)