Advance Notice: Briefs

Dingell invites AOC to Detroit to work on climate change

By: - March 4, 2019 12:22 am

Debbie Dingell (left) and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (right)

U.S. Rep. Debbie Dingell (D-Dearborn) said on Sunday that she’s invited progressive freshman U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) to come to Detroit to work on climate change issues.

Fox News Sunday host Chris Wallace said Dingell was a “moderate,” which she pushed back on, calling herself a “pragmatist” who supports Medicare for All. She said she’s an “auto person” but is concerned about climate change.

“I went to AOC and said, ‘AOC, we want to go to a carbonless society. Will you work with me to build an electric infrastructure that will help give confidence for people to buy electric vehicles?’

“… She’s coming to Detroit. I invited her to Detroit and she’s going to work with me,” Dingell continued. “That’s why we — everything’s got to be like this. Why can’t we work together for common goals?”

Dingell was asked to respond to President Donald Trump’s comments at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) that Democrats “don’t have anything with Russia. … Right now we have people in Congress that hate our country.”

Wallace asked if Democrats “really want Trump investigations to take up so much of the time and drown out so much of the other things you’re doing?”

“So I’m going to actually say that we, as a Congress, not just Democrats, Democrats and Republicans, can walk and chew gum at the same time,” she said. “Congress has a fundamental responsibility for oversight and investigations. And I think we have abdicated it the last two years.”

Wallace also played the clip of Trump saying at CPAC, “All of a sudden they’re trying to take you out with bullshit.”

Wallace: You’ve said — before this you’ve said that — that Democrats moving to impeach the president could, in your words, tear the country apart. Where are you on impeachment now? More importantly, where is the House Democratic leadership? Is that off the table?

Dingell: I think that we’re waiting for the facts. I’ve always said that. And I do not think an impeachment should ever be a partisan event. I think we need to have Republicans and Democrats or it will tear this country apart. It’s a very serious movement. But that’s why oversight’s a legitimate function. This investigation is a legitimate function.

Wallace asked Dingell how she was doing after the loss of her husband, former U.S. Rep. John Dingell (D-Dearborn), who passed away last month at age 92.

“It’s hard. You know, I — but I can hear him in my ear saying get back out there and work. He was a great man and we had a love affair — you know the love affair we had,” she said. “… I remember talking to you about whether I should accept that first date with him. And we were — he was my love.”

Dingell recalled that she and Wallace used to live next door to one another and he didn’t want her to marry John Dingell.

Wallace responded that Debbie Dingell was like “the fairy godmother to my children. I didn’t want you to move out of town.”

Our stories may be republished online or in print under Creative Commons license CC BY-NC-ND 4.0. We ask that you edit only for style or to shorten, provide proper attribution and link to our web site. Please see our republishing guidelines for use of photos and graphics.

Susan J. Demas

Susan J. Demas is a 21-year journalism veteran and one of the state’s foremost experts on Michigan politics, appearing on MSNBC, CNN, NPR and WKAR-TV’s “Off the Record.” In addition to serving as Editor-in-Chief, she is the Advance’s chief columnist, writing on women, LGBTQs, the state budget, the economy and more. Most recently, she served as Vice President of Farough & Associates, Michigan’s premier political communications firm. For almost five years, Susan was the Editor and Publisher of Inside Michigan Politics, the most-cited political newsletter in the state. Susan’s award-winning political analysis has run in more than 80 national, international and regional media outlets, including the Guardian U.K., NBC News, the New York Times, the Detroit News and MLive. She is the only Michigan journalist to be named to the Washington Post’s list of “Best Political Reporters,” the Huffington Post’s list of “Best Political Tweeters” and the Washington Post’s list of “Best Political Bloggers.” Susan was the recipient of a prestigious Knight Foundation fellowship in nonprofits and politics. She served as Deputy Editor for MIRS News and helped launch the Michigan Truth Squad, the Center for Michigan’s fact-checking project. She started her journalism career reporting on the Iowa caucuses for The (Cedar Rapids) Gazette. Susan has hiked over 4,000 solo miles across four continents and climbed more than 70 mountains. She also enjoys dragging her husband and two teenagers along, even if no one else wants to sleep in a tent anymore.