Ocasio-Cortez, a Latina who has never previously held political office, easily won New York’s left-leaning 14th Congressional District against Republican Anthony Pappas. Her victory comes months after she unexpectedly defeated 10-term Democratic Rep. Joe Crowley in the June primary.
Ahead of the primary, Ocasio-Cortez worked as a bartender at a Mexican restaurant in New York City’s Union Square. In early October, she earned an endorsement from President Barack Obama.
“This is what is possible when everyday people come together in the collective realization that all our actions, no matter how small or how large, are powerful, worthwhile and capable of lasting change,” Ocasio-Cortez said on Tuesday.
“Words cannot express my gratitude to every organizer, every small-dollar donor, every working parent and dreamer who helped make this movement happen,” she continued.
“And that’s exactly what this is. Not a campaign or an election day, but a movement, a larger movement for social, economic and racial justice in America.”
Ocasio-Cortez also identified what policies she intends to target in office, including abolishing Immigration and Customs Enforcement, student loan debt (which she called “a ticking time bomb for our economy”) and “the role of money in politics.”