AOC reminds us there isn’t much liberalism on the Left anymore

When you’re ready to throw out the First Amendment, you’ve lost the plot.

In an interview that aired on Sunday, MSNBC’s Jen Psaki asked Democratic Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez if media organizations should be held accountable if their content “incites violence.” 

AOC replied, “I believe that when it comes to broadcast television, like Fox News, these are subject to federal law, federal regulation in terms of what’s allowed on air and what isn’t.”

News and opinion subject to federal law? The government deciding what news is allowed and isn’t? That would have been big news to the men who wrote the First Amendment precisely to prevent such censorship by their new government. That would have been big news to any standard American liberal for most of the history of the United States.

Ocasio-Cortez continued, “When you look at what Tucker Carlson and some of these other folks on Fox do, it is very, very clearly incitement of violence — very clearly incitement of violence.”

It is? Speech is violence?

For context, true “incitement of violence” is already illegal. But, as Cornell Law explains, it’s a very, very high threshold and applies only if  the speech is “directed to inciting or producing imminent lawless action,” and is “likely to incite or produce such action.” While one can certainly disagree with lots of what’s said by Tucker and others on Fox News, or even argue it’s inflammatory, nothing comes close to this standard—which, again, is already unlawful. So, what AOC is really arguing is to expand the narrow exception for “incitement of violence” to include speech she just doesn’t like. 

The interviewer, of course, was former Biden Press Secretary Psaki, who didn’t really challenge AOC’s remarks on censoring speech. The same Psaki was asked last year about her former boss’s intent to create a Disinformation Governance Board and how that might be problematic, and she responded, “It sounds like the objective of the board is to prevent disinformation and misinformation from traveling around the country in a range of communities.”

“I’m not sure who opposes that effort,” she added.

A government agency that determines what is “disinformation” and “misinformation,” and Psaki doesn’t see how that could be a problem? Did liberals in the Joe McCarthy era find it problematic that the government could determine who was or wasn’t unAmerican?

This exchange between AOC and Psaki took place less than a week after Democrat Stacey Plaskett threatened Twitter Files reporter Matt Taibbi with prison time over his March congressional testimony claiming he had committed perjury. Plaskett was very worried that Taibbi had got two acronyms wrong, a laughable triviality in the grand scheme of this blockbuster story.

What Plaskett wasn’t worried about, and seemingly neither are Psaki or Ocasio-Cortez, was the primary revelation of the Twitter Files: The federal government worked hand-in-hand with U.S. social media companies to suppress news and censor opinions.

A direct violation of the First Amendment. 

Psaki didn’t ask AOC if she had concerns about this monstrous affront to Americans’ most basic freedoms on her MSNBC program.

Because AOC doesn’t have concerns about it. She believes the federal government should regulate the press and speech. She just said so. When Psaki was confronted with the unconstitutionality and moral absurdity of her former administration policing speech in April last year, she said she wasn’t sure who would oppose the idea. Obviously, she didn’t. 

To my knowledge, Rep. Plaskett has not apologized or changed her mind for threatening Taibbi. 

So, when people tell you who they are, believe them. Time and again, the mainstream Left shows through words and deeds that the most basic precepts of liberalism, free speech and press freedom key among them, no longer matter to many American ‘liberals.’ Worse, these alleged liberals are now firmly on the other side of these principles in many cases.

They want the DHS, CIA, FBI, and other government agencies to make social media censor stories about the First Family that might hurt their political side. The Left wants the federal government to regulate speech and news they don’t like. The Left wants to imprison reporters who shine a light on offenses to the Constitution.

The reason there has been no outrage on the Left over the Twitter Files is because, between the Donald Trump phenomenon and the COVID-19 pandemic, people who were already warm to central planning now see no reason that principle can’t also be applied to speech and the press.

The Twitter Files reporters thought they were revealing a rogue federal government. The Left was annoyed that these reporters revealed what they now consider good and efficient government.

The Left won’t typically frame what they’re doing in this manner, but it’s unfortunately where we’re at. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez wanting to sic the Feds on Tucker Carlson and his channel because they have opinions or report news she doesn’t like is but the latest reminder of how pervasively illiberal the modern American Left has become. I dare you to find a ‘liberal’ who finds her comments unsettling.

Expect more reminders in the future.

Like this article? Check out the latest BASEDPolitics podcast on Apple PodcastsSpotify, or below:

YouTube player

Sign up for Our Email List

* indicates required
*By signing up for our email you consent to getting our emails directly in your inbox. These including our newsletter or other informational emails*

Our Latest Podcast

Related articles

Rand Paul: Why did the Left abandon its defense of free speech?

Rand Paul asked a great question. The answer is simple:...

Dr. Fauci set for dramatic showdown in Congress

Go ahead and pencil January 8th and 9th into...

Javier Milei proved that libertarian populism can win

In 2008 and 2012, Republican Congressman Ron Paul ran...

Don’t fall for ‘woke’ misinformation about the origins of Thanksgiving

Who doesn’t love Thanksgiving ? Woke social media activists, apparently. Every time this...
Jack Hunter
Jack Hunter
Jack Hunter is a freelance writer, the co-author of Sen. Rand Paul’s 2011 book ‘The Tea Party Goes to Washington’ and the former politics editor for