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AOC earns 3 Pinocchio’s for ‘highly misleading’ claim on Trump’s funding to fight opioid crisis

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Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez was fact-checked by The Washington Post over her “misleading complaint” about  President Donald Trump and opioid funding.

The Washington Post gave the New York Democrat three Pinocchios for the “highly misleading” comments she made last week that Trump had transferred “$10s of millions” for the national emergency on the U.S. southern border, but “$0” for the opioid crisis.

(File Photo: screenshot)

Ocasio-Cortez tweeted her remarks after a C-SPAN video was posted showing her questioning of James Carroll, the White House director of drug policy.

“Did the declaration of a public health emergency for opioids make any additional funding available to expand treatment for individuals for overdose to provide services for people in recovery?” she asked Carroll.

She retweeted C-SPAN’s post along with her quote: “So, we’ve got two emergencies, one is treated with an actual action and the other is just to raise awareness.” The tweet has now earned nearly 11,000 retweets and over 35,000 likes.

But the Post‘s Glenn Kessler called out the freshman congresswoman for “making a highly misleading comparison” of the two situations.

“[T]he situations are not comparable. Trump wanted almost $6 billion for his wall, which Congress refused. But Congress acted to give the administration more than $6 billion for the opioid crisis, so there was little need for him to transfer funds without congressional authorization,” Kessler wrote.

Congress refused to give a green light for $5.7 billion Trump wanted to build the wall, prompting the president to declare a national emergency last month. A “nationwide public health emergency” was declared by then-acting Health and Human Services Secretary Eric Hargan back in 2017 when Trump asked his administration to “respond to the crisis caused by the opioid epidemic,” the New York Post reported.

“Ocasio-Cortez is making a misleading comparison,” the Washington Post report noted Tuesday. “Trump has no need to transfer billions of dollars for the opioid emergency because Congress already has appropriated billions of dollars. Trump’s backing of a national public-health emergency did more than raise awareness; it triggered a congressional response. So it’s the exact opposite of the standoff over the wall.”

The newspaper awarded the self-proclaimed democratic socialist with three Pinocchios, arguing that “One can question the effectiveness of the Trump response to the opioid epidemic without resorting to red herrings and false equivalency.”

Ocasio-Cortez earned a fresh round of mockery on Twitter following her dubious award.

Frieda Powers

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