AOC Draws Massive Crowd at SXSW

She took a question from Bill Nye
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 11, 2019 5:33 AM CDT
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Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez arrives for the world premiere of "Knock Down the House" at the Paramount Theatre during the South by Southwest Film Festival on Sunday, March 10, 2019, in Austin, Texas.   (Photo by Jack Plunkett/Invision/AP)
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(Newser) – A gaggle of 2020 presidential hopefuls descended on the South by Southwest festival in Austin over the weekend—but the political figure everybody wanted to see was Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. The 29-year-old freshman lawmaker spoke to a massive ballroom that was "full to the brim" and she could have filled an even bigger venue, NBC reports. Sens. Elizabeth Warren and Amy Klobuchar, former Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz, and former Ohio Gov. John Kasich were among those who spoke to smaller audiences. Beto O'Rourke also turned up for the premiere of Running With Beto, a documentary about his Senate run last year, but the Texan declined to say whether he is planning a White House bid, Politico reports.

In her interview with Intercept political editor Briahna Gray, Ocasio-Cortez defended democratic socialism and discussed race, class, and capitalism, Fox reports. She described political moderates as "meh." The Democrat also took a question from Bill Nye the Science Guy, telling him that she would deal with Republicans "afraid" of making big changes to combat climate change by taking apart the "zero-sum mentality" that imagines somebody else's gain means a loss, instead of a gain for everybody. "AOC gets it," he tweeted afterward. "She sees that fear is dividing us. We can address income inequality. We can address climate change, if we get together and get to work." (Read more Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez stories.)

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