Fox News and other right-wing news outlets are claiming that Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez “literally ran” away from a potential (but not likely) Republican political opponent after he introduced himself during the National Puerto Rican Day Parade on Sunday.
Rich Valdes, right-wing radio talk show producer and man largely responsible for the “Mark Levin Show,” was surprised when Ocasio-Cortez didn’t respond warmly to his challenging her to a “debate.”
Valdes claims that she “cut her handshaking short, jerked her hand back and jetted to the other side of the street.” A reasonable response any time a Republican “challenges” you to a “debate” but also fairly expected from someone who is attempted to walk in a parade.
SHE WAS LITERALLY *IN A PARADE*— Bobby Lewis (@revrrlewis) June 10, 2019
DO YOU KNOW HOW PARADES WORK pic.twitter.com/1ZMp1Jjr7K
“I thought this was a good time to try and get a response but I honestly only saw the back of her head as she trotted across the street.”
It’s almost like she was walking in a parade!
Ocasio-Cortez haters like the New York Post are also claiming that radio host Curtis Sliwa has an identical account of the incident in spite of it being completely different.
She was literally walking in a parade https://t.co/efNbl0UqT8— Jess Dweck (@TheDweck) June 9, 2019
Very rude that a NY congresswoman in the middle of walking in a parade didn’t stop everything to debate a random dude who lives in NJ
— Jess Dweck (@TheDweck) June 9, 2019
“As soon as she saw him, she did a pirouette — a spin — and she ran north on Fifth Avenue, ahead of her delegation, just to get away from Rich,” he said. That’s entirely different from her shaking Valdes’ hand for a moment before cutting it short when being asked for a “debate” from some rando.
Corbin Trent, Ocasio-Cortez’s spokesperson, treated the event with the gravity it deserves.
“She kept walking! The parade moved! It’s a procession! Give me a break.”
He also pointed out that AOC doesn’t owe anyone a debate. He didn’t point out that if AOC had to debate every random dude who demanded it of her, she wouldn’t have time to sleep, let alone do her job. Or that “debate me” is a tired ploy that right-wing men have used for years so that they can declare victory the moment the target rolls her eyes. Or that nobody even knows who this Valdes guy is.
Leave that to the commenters.
First - it’s a parade— Michelle (@mmyer618) June 10, 2019
Second- what opponent?
She doesn't want to date you @foxnews !— d_mcc (@d_mccarthy37) June 10, 2019
It's in the "How To Get Out-Of-My-League Girls To Talk To Me" manual. Wait until they become politicians and then try to 'debate' them as they process past during a parade.— Fancy Trash (@DanCash) June 10, 2019
“Running” like this is why it took me over 4 hours to complete a half marathon.— Cary (@Cary_wh) June 10, 2019
She also has no obligation to debate some strange guy on the street. What do they expect her to do? Argue with every idiot that demands attention?— ShonnaRose (@ShonnaRoseS) June 10, 2019
BREAKING: The Pride parade ran away from me whilst I yelled “debate me” WHAT ARE THEY HIDING!?— Jon K (@jon_k) June 10, 2019
better chyron: opponent can't keep up with fast walking aoc— Howie Duet (@Bortlandia) June 10, 2019
Maybe she can pull that stunt on him during the Straight Pride Parade.— Yellojkt (@yellojkt) June 10, 2019
I have a feeling after 30 seconds he could not get the words out.— Uncle Grim (@Libraryghost) June 10, 2019
EVERYONE STOP THE PARADE, I HAVE A QUESTION!— Pop Culture Portmanteau (@RalfThePowerful) June 10, 2019
LOL, OR in another perfectly reasonable take...— Zimzalagrim (@Zimzalagrim) June 10, 2019
"AOC Takes the lead vs her opponent in the PR Parade!"
"Opponent" in a parade?— Fancy Trash (@DanCash) June 10, 2019
And there she was thinking he was a mouthbreathing trumpster troll with ill-informed, ill-conceived opinions wanting to shout at her in front of the cameras so he could brag how he 'owned the lib'.
Lol, anyone at fox knowing how anything works.— JRBUpton (@up2000lbs) June 10, 2019
Republicans always feel entitled to have their needs met. Even if it is not the appropriate time or place.— El Primero (@Saint_Nero) June 10, 2019
I bet at first AOC was aggressively running TOWARD them! ????— Robgarren (@Robgarren1) June 10, 2019
They thought PR stood for Public Reations— David Rowinski (@bolekaja1001) June 10, 2019
Look at them all! They're running! Running away from the truth!! Wait! Come back! Why are you all looking at me like I'm crazy?— Amenophis Fikee (@Angrifon) June 10, 2019
Good thing they included that red circle or I would've thought that bald guy was @aoc.— DefenestratorOfSouls (@DefenestratorO) June 10, 2019
I'm going to approach the MAGA hat people in my local diner and challenge them to a debate, and when they get up and leave, I'm gonna take a photo of their backs and call then out on Twitter as a coward who wouldn't even debate me. Because, apparently, that's a thing we do now.— pleming (@pleming) June 10, 2019
What's funny (sad) is that the "opponent" is not actually her opponent. He lives in Jersey and is a scheming carpetbagger. pic.twitter.com/eqM38SnCX7— Tiffany "Nice Lady" Neuman (@happypragmatist) June 10, 2019
Keep spending your time trying to challenge AOC to a “debate,” guys. She’ll be busy working on her Green New Deal and getting the experience necessary to become President.