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AOC says pro-Trump colleagues who sought pardons should be expelled from Congress

AOC says pro-Trump colleagues who sought pardons should be expelled from Congress
New York congresswoman calls on Democrats to get serious about both Jan 6 and abortion rights

Progressive Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has a message for her fellow Democrats in Congress: It’s time to get serious.

The New York lawmaker appeared on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert on Tuesday after a jaw-dropping hearing held by the special committee investigating January 6, where she said it was time for Democrats to start acting on the evidence they already had.

That means, Ms Ocasio-Cortez explained, expelling any member of Congress who can be proved to have sought a pardon from Donald Trump after Jan 6 to shield themselves from the obvious potential criminal liability that they could face for the participation in an effort that led to an attempt by Donald Trump’s supporters to overthrow the government.

“I will say, bare minimum, those who specifically sought pardons for themselves should be expelled from the United States House of Representatives,” she said to loud cheers from Mr Colbert’s audience.

“They were willing to commit crimes in order to illegally seize power, and no person … of any party should be willing to do that in order to undermine our democracy,” the congresswoman continued.

But January 6 isn’t the only issue she says her party is refusing to take seriously. Following Friday’s ruling of the Supreme Court Ms Ocasio-Cortez and other Democrats like Elizabeth Warren are calling on their party’s leaders to take tangible steps to protect the right to abortion in America. Some of those tangible steps suggested by the lawmakers (and rejected by the White House) include coming out in support of changes to the filibuster that would allow the Democratic Party’s 51-vote Senate majority to codify abortion rights, same-sex marriage rights and interracial marriage rights as court watchers and activists worry that the Supreme Court will target those next.

The lawmakers have also urged the federal government to set up abortion clinics on federal land, a prospect the White House has also rejected citing fears that women who take part in the services could be prosecuted in red states.

The growing friction between progressives and the White House on the issue comes as it appears clear that much of the Democratic Party’s base is not confident that their party’s leaders have a plan for saving abortion rights in America beyond campaigning and hoping for the exceptionally slim chance of taking a Senate supermajority in the next decade.