“It’s not so much left vs. right as it is top vs. bottom…”
Joe Crowley was moving up the line to become Speaker, but he should never have been allowed to climb the party hierarchy to begin with. He was everything the Democratic Party should have been fighting against: a corporate elitist who always talked out of both sides of his mouth. He was an establishment “centrist” in a deep-blue district, the kind of person more concerned with calls for civility than anger over Trump’s humanitarian atrocities. Crowley, who didn’t even live in the district he was serving, was also an arrogant bastard who sent a surrogate to debate his primary opponent. Classless to the end, Crowley threw all kinds of childish tantrums to include undermining a colleague who backed AOC after the election.
Those of us who wanted to purge our party of his ilk were told we needed to “grow up”, “get serious” and “stand behind” the party establishment on who they wanted to be our leaders.
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the passionate usurper who defeated Crowley, warned her constituents that he was beholden to special interest money. She repeatedly contrasted her small donation funding with the private equity groups, corporate PACs, and pharmaceutical lobbyists who were responsible for almost the entirety of his campaign portfolio.
She warned everyone that Crowley wasn’t in Congress to serve their interests, but those rich and powerful who, incidentally, were also funding Trump.
Well, once again, AOC was proven right:
Barely two months out of office, Joe Crowley, the former ten-term U.S. congressman who suffered a stunning defeat to Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez in the Democratic primary for New York’s 14th district last November, is now joining Squire Patton Boggs, one of the most powerful corporate lobbying firms the U.S.
Squire Patton Boggs is a large firm with many clients, including major corporate powerhouses from the defense, private prison, and fossil fuel industry, as well as ultra-conservative advocacy groups.
Crowley now works alongside former GOP leaders like Trent Lott and John Boehner to lobby on behalf of groups that include the Koch-funded Policy and Taxation Group, the Gulf Energy Alliance, and Advanced Emissions Solutions (AES). Trent Lott praised him during the announcement of his hire, saying he will be an “asset for clients”.
Even worse, Crowley was recently tasked with lobbying for Donald Trump’s NAFTA replacement, called USMCA (United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement). In fact, he is now “honorary co-chairman” of something called the “Pass USMCA Coaltion”, which was launched by Trump’s former deputy chief of staff, Rick Dearborn.
Right now, there is a massive, coordinated effort with GOP strategists to conduct a “multi-million dollar marketing blitz” to pass Trump’s “new NAFTA”. Trump is trying to get it passed before the August recess. In a press release, Crowley played the lapdog by saying he was “excited” to join the effort and stated, “my former colleagues should take action to ratify the agreement quickly.”
The biggest proponent of Trump’s new deal used to be one of Crowley’s biggest backers as well: Big Pharma. The reason shouldn’t surprise anyone. The new deal would give pharmaceutical companies a whopping 10 years of protection from cheaper competitors for an expensive drug category.
“By including 10 years in a treaty, we are locking ourselves in to a higher level of monopoly protection for drugs that are already taking in billions of dollars a year.”
Jeffrey Francer, general counsel for the Association for Accessible Medicine
Without competition, this deal allows them to charge pretty much whatever they want. When Crowley was asked if he could guarantee his former Congressional colleagues that this deal wouldn’t result in large price increases, he dodged the question by saying “I think that it’s for them to make their own decision on how they’re going to vote on this particular issue”.
For the 10 years Crowley was in office, Fox News and other right wing outlets never said a word about New York's District 14 representative. That changed once he was replaced with a smart, progressive millennial not beholden to special interests. AOC is now the most feared politician on the right…. and the establishment left, and I love her for that. I don’t know what the future holds for her, but no matter how high her star rises, I know that she can always be counted on to fight for her ideals and her people.
She will sure as hell will never be referred to as an “asset” for Trump’s people.