Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez spent time with “Face the Nation” host Margaret Brennan on Sunday and jumped right into one of the biggest hot-button issues in the country right now: the ever-growing United Auto Workers strike, which has expanded to 20 states. President Joe Biden plans to join the picket line in Michigan on Tuesday (which was announced after Donald Trump made the same trip), a move that Ocasio-Cortez calls “a historic, historic event.”
“We have never seen in modern history a president show up to a picket line like this. And I think it should be earned, it needs to be earned,” she continued. “And I believe that President Biden is working towards that, especially when he lands in Michigan on Tuesday to earn that.”
While supportive of the Hollywood strikes, Biden has not made a similar appearance in support of SAG-AFTRA or the WGA.
Ocasio-Cortez also called on Sen. Bob Menendez to step down following his indictment on bribery charges. She told Brennan that “consistency matters” and, alluding to President Donald Trump’s multiple indictments, “It shouldn’t matter whether it’s a Republican or a Democrat. The details in this indictment are extremely serious. They involve the nature of not just his but all of our seats in Congress.”
On Friday, members of the UAW walked out of factories in 20 states. The strike — which is in response to General Motors, Ford and Stellantis (collectively known as the Detroit Three) — began after the UAW’s contract expired on Sept. 14. The two sides have attempted negotiations, but as of Thursday, no deal had been struck, leaving 18,600 members with little recourse other than to leave work. The union totals 146,000 members.
The UAW’s demands include a raise increase of 36% over the next four years and a return to direct-benefit pension plans for new hires, something that stopped in 2007. The companies have so far claimed they cannot meet these demands because they are focusing resources on transitioning from gas-powered cars to electric cars.
The union also wants to represent workers at 10 electric vehicle battery factories and for workers at those factories to be paid the union’s top wage. As reported by the Associated Press, the Detroit Three have made a combined $164 billion — $20 billion in 2023 alone.