In less than 45 days, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez will take her seat as the newest, and youngest, woman elected to congress.
Cortez is 29 years old and was born on October 13, 1989. She was born and raised in New York City, and grew up in the Bronx. Her parents were both from Puerto Rican descent.
As a young girl, Cortez was interested in a variety of things. In high school she won second prize in the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair after doing a project on microbiology. After high school she attended Boston University and became the LDZ (Lorenzo De Zavala) secretary of state.
Just last year Cortez was working in Manhattan as a bartender and waitress. She took on this job to help her family. At the same time, she was attending Boston University to study economics and international relations. While there, she became an intern in the office of Senator Ted Kennedy. She learned about politics and money, and decided to move on to community organizing.
In 2008, Cortez’s father Sergio Ocasio passed away from lung cancer. Wanting to help her family after the passing of her father, she took on that second job as a bartender and waitress.
Cortez decided to run for New York’s 14th congressional district, which covers the Bronx and Queens. On June 26, 2018 Cortez won the democratic primary for New York’s 14th congressional district. Joe Crowley, who for 5 years was the the 14th congressional district democratic representative of New York, was succeeded by Cortez.
In one year, Cortez has gone from being a waitress, to becoming the youngest female member of Congress in history.
“But after 20 years of the same representation, we have to ask; who has New York been changing for?…It’s time to fight for a New York working families can afford. That’s why I’m running for congress.” said Cortez in a video she posted on Twitter on May 30, 2018.
Cortez believes in change, and this is what she wants:
Medicare for All
Universal Jobs Guarantee
Fully Funded Public Schools and universities
Paid Family and Sick Leave
Housing as a Human Right
Justice System Reform
Clean Campaign Finance
An Economy of Peace
Cortez knows what she wants, and is determined to make a difference.
In a video on twitter Cortez said, “We can do it now. It doesn’t take 100 years to do this, It takes political courage.”