Ocasio-Cortez: 'Democratic Party is a center or center-conservative party'

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-CortezAlexandria Ocasio-CortezHouse Oversight accuses Border Patrol of blocking investigation into secret Facebook group Company to provide free clothing to any female candidate The Democratic demolition derby MORE (D-N.Y.) returned to her criticism of the Democratic Party's establishment on Monday, declaring the Democrats a "center or center-conservative party."

In an interview at MLK Now 2020 in New York, the freshman congresswoman lamented the unwillingness of party leaders, including Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiThe Hill's Morning Report - Sanders on the rise as Nevada debate looms Lawmakers push back at Trump's Pentagon funding grab for wall Malaysia says it will choose 5G partners based on own standards, not US recommendations MORE (D-Calif.), to allow progressive priorities such as "Medicare For All" to reach the floor for a vote.

"We don’t have a left party in the United States,” the congresswoman said. “The Democratic Party is not a left party. The Democratic Party is a center or center-conservative party.”

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“We can’t even get a floor vote on Medicare for All. Not even a floor vote that gets voted down. We can’t even get a vote on it. So this is not a left party,” she told interviewer, journalist and best-selling author Ta-Nehisi Coates.

She and other progressive lawmakers, Ocasio-Cortez added, are "working to try to make that shift happen."

Ocasio-Cortez, who joined the House last year after defeating a longtime incumbent Rep. Joseph Crowley (D-N.Y.), has since clashed publicly with Pelosi and other House Democrats over issues such as the Green New Deal and immigration.

She recently endorsed Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersBloomberg campaign: Primary is two-way race with Sanders Warren: Bloomberg making debate will show how other candidates handle 'an egomaniac billionaire' HuffPost reporter: Sanders could win plurality of delegates but lose nomination MORE (I-Vt.) for president, joining two other members of the "squad" of progressive freshman women who all were elected in 2018.