Saikat Chakrabarti is the controversial, hard-left chief of staff to the equally liberal Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. He is also the guy who recently compared moderate Democrats to segregationists of the past. Yet, the Washington Post is in love with what this activist could mean. In a 2900 word Post Magazine profile, Chakrabarti is hailed as “AOC’s chief of change” and “the movement chief of staff.”
Staff writer David Montgomery glossed over the extreme nature of Ocasio-Cortez’s positions, downplaying the disastrous launch of the Green New Deal. Instead, Chakrabarti’s boss simply represents a “pure expression of the progressive movement”:
Ocasio-Cortez’s priorities and approach offer the purest expression of the progressive movement in Congress. And as her gatekeeper and chief of staff — the COS to AOC.
Chakrabarti is a new type on Capitol Hill: the movement chief of staff. It’s what you become when your boss is invested with the hopes of millions of Twitter followers and painted with the prejudices of countless haters. Your job involves both scheduling for the next week and planning for the ages.
Get it? It’s just the bigoted haters who are the problem.
It isn’t until way down in paragraph 22 that problems for Chakrabarti or Ocasio-Cortez surfaced:
Not everything has run smoothly. Chakrabarti played a major role in helping to produce the Green New Deal resolution introduced by Ocasio-Cortez and Sen. Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.) in February. Yet the measure’s rollout was marred by an FAQ that included controversial language not in the resolution, such as providing economic security to those “unwilling to work.” Conservative critics gleefully pounced.
Conservatives, always pouncing on something. Of course, this bland description of the botched rollout doesn’t even mention cow farting. It’s right there in the Green New Deal’s frequently asked questions section: “We set a goal to get to net-zero, rather than zero emissions, in 10 years because we aren’t sure that we’ll be able to fully get rid of farting cows and airplanes that fast.”
Never mentioned in the article is when Chakrabarti compared moderate Democrats to segregationists. Montgomery could have checked his own paper for information. The Washington Post reported this on June 28:
In a now-deleted tweet, the first-term congresswoman’s chief of staff, Saikat Chakrabarti, compared two of the party’s most moderate caucuses to the Southern Democrats, who favored segregation and vehemently opposed civil rights.
“Instead of ‘fiscally conservative but socially liberal,’ let’s call the New Democrats and Blue Dog Caucus the ‘New Southern Democrats,’ ” he wrote. “They certainly seem hell bent to do to black and brown people today what the old Southern Democrats did in the 40s.”
As for alleged campaign finance violations, that got one sentence in paragraph 23. The next sentence offered a defense: “Chakrabarti and an attorney for the groups said none of the money went to Chakrabarti but was to support the multiple campaigns seeking to transform Congress.”
Outlets like the Washington Post, Time magazine and others can be counted on to rhapsodize over Ocasio-Cortez and her chief of staff. As for the cringe-inducing beliefs, such as getting rid of airplanes, those will just be swept under the rug.