Progressive U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez will serve on a panel advising Joe Biden on climate policy, the apparent Democratic presidential nominee and the Congresswoman’s spokesperson said.
Biden said that Ocasio-Cortez is on one of the panels in comments to Las Vegas CBS affiliate KLAS-TV on Tuesday, when the former vice president was asked what he was doing to bring in supporters of Sen. Bernie Sanders into the fold.
“We’ve made some changes, we’ve listened to the Bernie supporters and, you know, for example, we have Congresswoman Ocasio-Cortez, she is on one of the panels as well,” Biden said. “And so I think we’re going to have a very united party.”
Ocasio-Cortez, who had endorsed Sanders months before he dropped out of the race in April, will be serving as Sanders’ representative on the committee convened by Biden dealing with climate policy, her spokeswoman said.
“She made the decision with members of the Climate Justice community — and she will be fully accountable to them and the larger advocacy community during this process,” spokeswoman Lauren Hitt said in an email.
Hitt said that Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., “believes the movement will only be successful if we continue to apply pressure both inside and outside the system,” and that “This is just one element of the broader fight for just policies.”
Sanders, I-Vt., ended his campaign for the Democratic presidential nomination on April 8, and at the time the pledged to have significant influence over the party platform. Sanders went on to officially endorse Biden for president less than a week later.
Biden, in the Tuesday interview with KLAS, which was done over the internet amid the coronavirus pandemic, referenced to Sanders’ endorsement.
The former vice president also seemed to suggest that Sanders’ supporters may have gotten the wrong idea about his positions during the campaign.
“My message to all — and what they’re finding out now that the nomination process is de facto over, they’re finding out the positions I had on an awful lot of things were not accurately characterized and they’re feeling more comfortable with it,” Biden said. “But I’m listening. I’m here, I need them, and I hope they all will join us.”
Although Sanders suspended his campaign, he remains on the ballot in primaries. On Tuesday Biden easily defeated Sanders in the Nebraska Democratic primary, NBC News projected. The win padded Biden’s delegate count tally to 1,490 of the 1,991 needed to secure the nomination.