New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez addressed the "abusive language" of Trump-loving Republican Congressman Ted Yoho, as well as the "culture of misogyny" that enables it, in a moving speech from the House floor on Thursday.
When sharing a C-SPAN broadcast of her remarks on Twitter, Ocasio-Cortez—who was accosted and called a "fucking bitch" by Yoho earlier this week—said she was "deeply appreciative" for those who had been inspired by the news coverage to speak out on the widespread mistreatment of women in Congress and beyond.
Ocasio-Cortez opened her remarks by recounting the verbal abuse-laden event in question.
"About two days ago, I was walking up the steps of the Capitol when Rep. Yoho suddenly turned a corner—he was accompanied by Rep. Roger Williams—and accosted me on the steps right here in front of our nation's Capitol," she said. "I was minding my own business, walking up the steps, and Rep. Yoho put his finger in my face. He called me 'disgusting,' he called me 'crazy,' he called me 'out of my mind,' and he called me 'dangerous.' And then he took a few more steps and—after I had recognized his comments as rude—he walked away and said 'I'm rude? You're calling me rude?'"
Ocasio-Cortez said she then walked inside to cast a vote on behalf of her constituents, only to exit the building to find a group of reporters and—once again—Rep. Yoho.
"And in front of reporters, Rep. Yoho called me, and I quote, 'a fucking bitch,'" Ocasio-Cortez said. "These were the words that Rep. Yoho levied against a congresswoman. A congresswoman that not only represents New York's 14th congressional district but every congresswoman and every woman in this country. Because all of us have had to deal with this in some form, some way, some shape at some point in our lives."
Yoho's comments, Ocasio-Cortez added, were not "deeply hurtful or piercing" to her because she's experienced similarly abusive behavior from men in the past, particularly during the time she spent in working class jobs, including waiting tables. She's also experienced this sort of egregious behavior more recently from other Republicans including the POTUS and the governor of Florida, among others.
"This is not new and that is the problem," she said. "Mr. Yoho was not alone. He was walking shoulder to shoulder with Rep. Roger Williams and that's when we start to see that this issue is not about one incident. It is cultural. It is a culture of lack of impunity, of accepting violence and violent language against women, and an entire structure of power that supports that."
She also criticized Yoho using his wife and daughters in his apology as a shield for his behavior.
"Mr. Yoho mentioned that he has a wife and two daughters. I am two years younger than Mr. Yoho's youngest daughter. I am someone's daughter, too," she said. "My father, thankfully, is not alive to see how Mr. Yoho treated his daughter."
As for an apology, Ocasio-Cortez explained that such a thing is of no interest to her due to the fact that Yoho—and others like him—don't actually have remorse for these actions.