- The Washington Times - Friday, April 3, 2020

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez declared Friday that inequality is a preexisting health condition and that minority and low-income communities should receive coronavirus relief in the form of reparations.

“COVID deaths are disproportionately spiking in Black + Brown communities,” the New York democratic socialist tweeted to her 6.6 million followers. “Why? Because the chronic toll of redlining, environmental racism, wealth gap, etc. ARE underlying health conditions.

“Inequality is a comorbidity,” she wrote. “COVID relief should be drafted with a lens of reparations.”

Ms. Ocasio-Cortez has been sounding the alarm on the racial impact of the coronavirus pandemic and criticized members of her own party for not doing enough to alleviate the financial burden faced by low-income families. She has used the crisis as an opportunity to push her radical agenda, including universal health care, universal college, guaranteed housing and instituting a living wage.

On Tuesday, she slammed Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo for suspending mortgage payments but not rent payments during the coronavirus pandemic. Instead, he halted evictions for 90 days, though renters will still be responsible for missed payments.

“We’re kind of creating a class and race issue,” Ms. Ocasio-Cortez said on WNYC’s “The Brian Lehrer Show,” Fox News reported Wednesday. “We’re essentially rewarding and offering preferential treatment to landowners and folks who are more wealthy, and we’re not offering that same kind of relief to renters.”

“There’s absolutely … racial and class inequities baked into the crisis,” she said. “If you are able to stay home. You are a privileged person in this moment.”

She said many of the essential workers like delivery drivers and grocery store workers are “overwhelmingly lower-income. They’re black. They’re brown … and they still have to pay rent tomorrow.”

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