AOC has the perfect response to Trump’s taunt about her college degree

President Donald Trump managed to discredit two entities at the same time during a campaign speech in Pennsylvania, when he lashed out against New York House Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, and by extension people who never went to college. He said about AOC that she was “a great student of the environment. I don’t think she ever took an environmental course in college. She did go to college, right?” (via Twitter). 

Trust AOC to deliver a biting clapback and turn the comment into an opportunity, which she did in a series of tweets, beginning with: “I could say yes, but who cares? Plenty of people without college degrees could run this country better than Trump ever has.” Then she said: “I’ve hired people w/o degrees who have done incredible, effective, & strategic work. The more college costs soar, the more degrees become a measure privilege than competence. Our country would be better off if we made public colleges tuition-free & cancelled student loan debt.”

For AOC’s part, in spite of the fact that she and her peers were holding down two or three jobs to clear their bills, she graduated from Boston University with a double degree in economics and international relations… and $25,000 in student debt (via Time). 

Twitter came out in support of AOC

Twitter wasn’t having it either, with many of AOC’s supporters going after Trump and what they saw as his derogatory view on women. One tweeted: “Why does Trump have such a problem with women, and especially women he knows are smart and articulate? And why does he think all women are so ‘beneath’ him…? Why is he threatened by Savannah, Lesley, Kristine?” Another helpfully reminded social media of AOC: “Yes, and she didn’t pay someone to take her entry exams…” in a reference to Mary Trump’s book where she revealed her uncle Donald Trump paid someone to take the SATs for him. 

A third pointed out that AOC not only had degrees, but “…graduated cum laude with a double major in international relations and economics — two things Trump has thrown in the garbage.” A fourth tied Trump’s comments to his views on non-college degree holders, saying: “Instead of inspiring his followers to better themselves, to learn marketable skills, or to just be better members of society, he mocks those who have put in the work and achieved their goals.” 

This isn't the first time Trump and AOC have sparred over this issue

Perhaps the best response to the president’s comments were made by AOC herself, not in response to this comment but to another. In a tweet dated August 13, AOC responded to another one of Trump’s remarks when he called her out during a Fox News talk show, saying, “AOC was a poor student … this is not even a smart person, other than she’s got a good line of stuff. I mean, she goes out and she yaps.” (via Twitter). Her response? “Let’s make a deal, Mr. President: You release your college transcript, I’ll release mine, and we’ll see who was the better student. Loser has to fund the Post Office.”

In the past, Trump has threatened his high school, colleges, and College Boards if they thought to release his grades or SAT scores, and had asked that his records be permanently sealed.  His lawyer at the time, Michael Cohen, warned back in 2015: “If in the event any of his records are released or otherwise disclosed without his prior written consent, we will hold your institution liable to the fullest extent of the law including damages and criminality” (via Time).

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