Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Clashes With Laura Ingraham: ‘Why Are You On TV?’

U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) pauses while speaking during a press conference at the U.S. Capitol on July 15, 2019 in Washington, DC.
Alex Wroblewski / Getty Images

New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez clashed with Fox News host Laura Ingraham on social media on Friday over the coronavirus and its alleged effects on communities of color.

Although The Atlantic claims there is little public data on the effect of COVID-19 on specific populations, Ocasio-Cortez claimed that COVID-19 deaths are “disproportionately spiking” in black and brown communities. The 30-year-old representative said that environmental racism, redlining, and the wealth gap are the equivalent of “underlying health conditions” that will cause communities of color to be hit the hardest from the pandemic.

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

In response, Ingraham fired back at the progressive congresswoman by pointing to her former position as a bartender.

“The Doctor of Mixology will save us!” the Fox News host wrote.

Ocasio-Cortez hit back by taking aim at Ingraham’s recent promotion of a coronavirus treatment that was reportedly removed from Twitter.

“Didn’t you just put a doctor on your show who faked their employment at Lenox Hill hospital and touted a COVID ‘treatment’ that you tweeted & Twitter had to remove because a man may have died trying self-administer it?”

“I’m sorry, why are you on TV again?” she asked afterward.

As reported by Politico, Twitter deemed that Ingraham’s post broke its rules on misinformation. In her post, the pundit touted the antimalarial drug hydroxychloroquine, which has been pushed by President Donald Trump and shown early promise for treating coronavirus. However, the lack of clinical trial research and the possible dangers of the drug has caused public health officials to warn of jumping to its effectiveness before the proper data is released.

The removal of Ingraham’s comment came as Vanity Fair’s Gabriel Sherman claimed that Fox News was worried about facing legal action over its purportedly misleading coronavirus coverage.

Despite a lack of data on coronavirus’ effects on specific communities, USA Today reported that lawmakers, advocates, and public health experts are worried that blacks, Latinos, and Native Americans — who reportedly have “many underlying health conditions” — will be hit hardest from coronavirus due to a lack of equal access to treatment and tests.

“The virus is an equal-opportunity crisis … but the impact and the burden of it is not going to be shared equally,” said Dr. Ashwin Vasan, a public health expert and assistant professor at Columbia University in New York City.

Vasan argued that officials should release information on race and coronavirus to help map out communities that are already struggling with care and resources, as well as those that have populations with disproportionate health conditions.