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AOC wants ‘9/11-style commission’ to look into family separation policy

AOC wants ‘9/11-style commission’ to look into family separation policy
Rep. Ocasio-Cortez, known for calling US migrant detention facilities “concentration camps,” has now said a special commission must investigate migrant family separations the same way the 9/11 terrorist attacks were investigated.

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who represents New York’s 14th congressional district, is facing a new wave of conservative outrage after she appeared to drag the 9/11 issue into the debate about the Trump administration's zero tolerance policy on illegal immigration.

Speaking at a town hall in Queens on Saturday, Ocasio-Cortez told the crowd that the US is responsible for the “lifelong trauma” that the now phased-out practice of family separation has caused children. She argued that it takes only two days to incur the type of psychological scarring they would suffer for the rest of their lives.

Noting that not all the children have been reunited and that in some cases parents were deported to third countries while their children stayed in the US, she said that “one of the first things” that should be done “when we elect a Democratic Senate and a Democratic President” is to “convene a special commission” to reunify all the children and investigate how it came to that.

“In the 9/11 commission, they were charged with investigating and making sure they dug out every nook and cranny of what happened and how it happened in our system. And I think that that kind of study is what’s going to be required in order to reunify as many children with their parents as possible,” she said.

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She also argued for the creation of a similar commission on Puerto Rico, regarding the aftermath of the devastating Hurricane Maria that crippled its infrastructure in September 2017.

The proposed commissions, she said, will be “charged with doing just as the 9/11 Commission did when they said what went wrong in the 9/11.”

AOC’s remark immediately caused pushback from the Republican National Committee (RNC), which accused her of downplaying the 9/11 tragedy.

“Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s divisive rhetoric never ends. Whether it’s smearing the US as running ‘concentration camps’ on the border or downplaying 9/11, the socialist ‘squad’ has shown us how anti-American they are,” the committee’s spokesperson, Liz Harrington, told the New York Post.

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Harrington, in turn, blamed Democrats for the failure to stem the flow of migrants from Central America and thus put an end to the crisis. “If the Democrats truly cared about addressing the crisis on the border, they would fix the loopholes in our immigration laws,” she said.

AOC is no stranger to controversy and using colorful, and some would argue, insensitive comparisons to prove her point.

In June, the progressive firebrand came under fire for likening migrant detention facilities on the US border to Nazi-style concentration camps. She chose to stand by her words even after facing a massive backlash from Holocaust memorial sites and conservatives. 

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