Democratic socialist Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) insisted Tuesday that dogs are treated better than people in the United States while pressing for federally dictated paid family leave, comparing puppies for sale to children reared by their parents.
What are the details?
"Do we know how long puppies are allowed to stay with their mothers after a dog has given birth?" Congresswoman Ocasio-Cortez asked Heritage Foundation research fellow Rachel Greszler during a House Oversight Committee hearing on paid leave before answering her own question: "Eight weeks. So, the market has decided that women and people who give birth deserve less time with their children than a dog."
Fox News noted that the Democrat from New York "seemed to be referring to the practice of breeders keeping puppies until they reach 8 weeks of age, at which point they're sold and likely never see their parents again."
Footage of Rep. Ocasio-Cortez's argument was posted on Twitter by Seattle-based radio host Jason Rantz, who wrote, "Thinking she's being clever at a House Oversight Committee, AOC makes a bizarre comparison between dog breeding and raising children, appears to suggest that dogs are given rights to raise their puppies for a certain length of time."
The congresswoman also expanded on her argument on Twitter, arguing, "Puppies aren't separated from their moms until ~8 weeks. Less than that is thought of as harmful or abusive. One of the most common lengths of US paid family leave is ~6 weeks. So yes, when we 'let the market decide' on parental leave, 'the market' treats people worse than dogs."
Rep. Ocasio-Cortez went on to say that the federal government should dictate three months of paid family leave "at a bare minimum," although she would prefer six months to a year. The democratic socialist went on to add that "equal paternity/parental leave is just as critical," and "non-birthing parents are JUST as important."
Following the hearing, Greszler — an economist who focuses on market-based solutions — told Fox News, "As a woman who has given birth to six children, I find being compared to a breeding dog with puppies incredibly offensive. What AOC failed to point out is that the reason many states require puppies to spend at least eight weeks with their mothers is in the context of them being sold to people after that period."