Alexandia Ocasio-Cortez stole the show at the Michael Cohen hearing on Wednesday, but she may have done more than just prove herself to be a sharp and serious congresswoman. Analysts are speculating that she may have strategically laid the groundwork necessary to finally subpoena Donald Trump’s tax returns and find out if he was lying about being a billionaire on top of everything else.
“Ocasio-Cortez started by picking up on previous lines of questioning regarding whether he knew if Trump ever ‘provided inflated assets to an insurance company,'” writes Daniel Politi for Slate. “When Cohen answered yes she continued: ‘Do you think we need to review his financial statements and his tax returns in order to compare them?’ Cohen answered yes again.”
Ocasio-Cortez continues asking about Trump’s taxes and related matters such as the value of the property he’s inherited — information that would all be found in a person’s tax returns. Though this probably doesn’t mean that Democrats can subpoena Trump’s tax returns tomorrow, multiple political experts are saying that this could put the party on the path to doing so.
They were also impressed with how well she used her limited time, rather than wasting it on speeches like some other people we know.
.@AOC just got Cohen to admit Trump was involved with some kind of insurance fraud, tax fraud regarding his golf courses and public funding, and got Cohen to agree that Congress should review Trump’s tax returns and financial records. This is why the GOP’s truly terrified of her.— Scott Dworkin (@funder) February 27, 2019
I’ll add that, at the end of the hearing, as the last Democrats got their turns, @AOC’s questioning was focused, detailed and useful to the investigative process — far better than the speechifying and name calling of some others. She continues to be very impressive. She’s gifted.— Howard Fineman (@howardfineman) February 27, 2019
AOC may be the strongest questioner yet in this House Oversight hearing. Clear, concise, focused. Not getting bogged down where other colleagues did.— Matt Ford (@fordm) February 27, 2019
I just rewatched @AOC @RepAOC questioning. And her questioning in the hearing on HR 1. She could give a master class to her colleagues on how to use 5 minutes to maximal effect. Impressive for any member. Awesome for a brand new one.— Norman Ornstein (@NormOrnstein) February 27, 2019
As those who know my history, have seen me getting beat up by the Bernie People, or actually read this post, may realize, I'm probably the last passenger to climb aboard the @AOC train. But her performance today was impossible not to respect. https://t.co/N6udw1nO3c— Ed Kilgore (@ed_kilgore) February 27, 2019
Contrast with AOC who once again has maximized her use of time at a Congressional hearing. She's figured this format out better than some 20 year veterans, who use their time for canned polemics. https://t.co/AuIDWfjTTw— Jeff Greenfield (@greenfield64) February 27, 2019
Expert opinions are great, but the general non-checkmark public loves her, too.
Imagine if that hearing had just been @AOC and Jim Jordan doing the questioning, how much more pathetic Jordan would look than he already did.— emptywheel (@emptywheel) February 27, 2019
This is the third hearing in which I’ve seen AOC questioning a witness.— The Hoarse Whisperer (@HoarseWisperer) February 27, 2019
In all three, she has been prepared, direct, in command and highly effective.
In fact, she was among the most effective questioners today.
I was trying to keep quiet about politics today but @AOC did a phenomenal job at the Cohen hearing today. Excellent line of questioning, executed beautifully. Thanks for your hard work and Congrats on a job well done. 🙂 https://t.co/6HLeISG2MV— Mandy Jewell (@ashtraygirl33) February 28, 2019
I missed this earlier but DAYUM the efficiency of @AOC in this questioning is sharp. Screw what the right wing pundits say about her, THIS is how you get information in a hearing that matters. https://t.co/2g85jIHIaH— Thom is ainm dom (@thomdunn) February 28, 2019
Every impressive committee/hearing performance (two in the last week) pushes me a little closer to getting that @AOC tattoo I’ve been pondering.— Shut Up, Donny (@nightmarecheeto) February 28, 2019
The only part of this “Jerry Springer” version of a congressional hearing worth watching was @AOC. Stayed on topic, asked questions to open up want for further investigations, and was a complete professional. Representing #NYC and absolutely crushing it https://t.co/EkEpWVDVCh— Kevin J Connelly (@Kevinfsu96) February 28, 2019
I’ve watched a lot of trial lawyers in action (paralegal, 25 years) and you were more like them than anyone else in that hearing. No wonder they fear you.— LiA (@LibsInAmerica) February 28, 2019
I'm nicknaming AOC as Buffy, cause she just slayed in that hearing 👏👏 pic.twitter.com/lqZU5rsaES— Morbie (@CuntyMcCuntstie) February 27, 2019
The Congresswoman has asked the most intrinsically evidentiary questions of this hearing so far. Not bad for a former Barista 🏆 #AOC— Nobody (@element_foreign) February 27, 2019
Anyone who thought that @AOC would embarrass herself in her first high-profile TV hearing must be bitterly disappointed right now. Instead, she was one of the best and most efficient Democratic questioners.— Walter Shapiro (@MrWalterShapiro) February 27, 2019
This is absolutely why the right is terrified of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. She is going to set them up and knock them down.