Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez took on former Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper after he called her Green New Deal resolution a “distraction” during Tuesday’s 2020 Democratic presidential debate.
“The Green New Deal decarbonizes our economy while ensuring we leave no community behind, incl job transitions for miners, labor rights, healthcare & wages,” tweeted the New York Democrat, who introduced the measure in February.
“Calling the consideration of working people in climate policy a ‘distraction’ is what is truly unsustainable + unrealistic,” she said.
At the CNN-hosted debate in Detroit, Mr. Hickenlooper criticized the Green New Deal’s promise of government jobs, saying, “the guarantee for a public job for everyone who wants one is a classic part of the problem. It’s a distraction.”
Six of the contenders for the Democratic presidential nomination have cosponsored the Green New Deal in the Senate, but Mr. Hickenlooper said running on the sweeping economic and environmental overhaul would hand the election to President Trump.
To pass “the Green New Deal and make sure every American is guaranteed a government job that they want, that is a disaster at the ballot box,” he said. “You might as well FedEx the election to Donald Trump.”
Sen. Edward Markey, Massachusetts Democrat, who sponsored the resolution in the Senate, backed Ms. Ocasio-Cortez’s criticism, tweeting, “What she said.”
A report by the free-market Competitive Enterprise Institute and Power the Future released Tuesday found that implementing the Green New Deal would cost households in five states more than $70,000 apiece in the first year.
Supporters of the Green New Deal, which calls for net-zero greenhouse-gas emissions by 2030, point to studies showing that climate change could cost the country $500 billion by 2100.