Freshman New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez told her colleagues in Congress this week that if Jesus Christ were alive today and came to the Capitol, he would be labeled a “radical” and ejected from the building.
As HuffPost reports, on Thursday, Ocasio-Cortez was speaking at a Committee on Oversight and Reform hearing. During the meeting, members were discussing the various ways the Trump administration has been accused of trying to undermine LGBTQ rights.
According to the report, the Trump administration has filed amicus briefs — documents submitted regarding a court case filed by people who aren’t litigants in the case but have a “strong interest” in it — in several religious liberty cases. In one case, out of Colorado, the Trump administration filed a brief in support of a bakery that refused to bake a cake for an LGBTQ wedding.
“The Trump administration has been working zealously to turn the government into an instrument of hostility and opposition towards LGBTQ rights across the executive branch of government,” said Maryland Rep. Jamie Raskin in his opening remarks.
Ocasio-Cortez, for her part, claimed that Jesus of Nazareth would himself, via his message of love and inclusion, would be labeled a “radical,” not taken seriously, and likely even forcibly removed from the Capitol Building.
“If Christ himself walked through these doors and said what he said thousands of years ago ― that we should love our neighbor and our enemy, that we should welcome the stranger, fight for the least of us… he would be maligned as a radical and rejected from these doors,” she said.
Ocasio-Cortez, who identifies as Catholic, has claimed in the past that her faith informs her political outlook.
In June 2018, she wrote a guest op-ed in America, a magazine produced by the Jesuit religious order, in which she said that her Catholic faith inspired her zeal for criminal justice reform.
Similarly, she echoed Pope Francis in supporting humane treatment of refugees, pointing out, as the pontiff did, that Jesus himself was a refugee.
At Thursday’s hearing, the committee heard from Evan Milton, a transgender man who sued a Catholic hospital for canceling his hysterectomy. Ocasio-Cortez says that her Catholic faith teaches her that everyone deserves equal access to medical care, saying that there is nothing “holy” about denying medical care to a person.
She also noted that, traditionally, people in power have used Scripture to justify horrible injustices, such as slavery and bigotry.