Ocasio-Cortez Blasts For-Profit 'Death Panels' In Response to Criticism of Social Healthcare

Congresswoman-elect Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez blasted criticism of proposed healthcare reforms by progressives, arguing that the U.S. currently has "for profit 'death panels'" that fail to cover sick patients' procedures.

The progressive Democrat from New York was responding to a Tweet from Jim Hanson, who is the president of the Security Studies Group. Hanson had retweeted part of a post by Ocasio-Cortez in which she advocated for "medicare for all." In his post, he sarcastically wrote: "Things will be much simpler when our Democrat Socialist overlords simply tell us who will live and who will die," adding "#DeathPanels rock."

Calling out his comment, the 29-year-old politician pointed out that the U.S. already has panels that make life and death decisions for Americans seeking treatment for illness and disease.

"Actually, we have for-profit 'death panels' now: they are companies + boards saying you're on your own bc they won't cover a critical procedure or medicine," she wrote.

"Maybe if the GOP stopped hiding behind this 'socialist' rock they love to throw, they'd actually engage on-issue for once," she continued.

In Ocasio-Cortez's original Twitter thread, she pointed out that her healthcare options as a well-paid member of congress would be far more affordable to those she had as a working class waitress just over a year ago in New York City.

"As a waitress, I had to pay more than TWICE what I'd pay as a member of Congress," she pointed out. "It's frustrating that Congressmembers would deny other people affordability that they themselves enjoy. Time for #MedicareForAll."

"People don't want overly complicated choice between pricey, low-quality plans," she wrote in a follow up. "We want an affordable solution that covers our needs, like the rest of the modern world."

A recent poll from Hill.TV and the Harris Polling Company showed that 70 percent of the country supports Medicare-for-All, a plan that would give the government's Medicare coverage to all Americans.

Ocasio-Cortez recently called out American health insurance groups, sharing a viral photo of a letter to a patient telling them to raise $10,000 before they could have a heart transplant. The letter specifically said that "the committee decision is that you are not a candidate at this time for a heart transplant due to needing [a] more secure financial plan …"

Slamming the letter, the progressive politician wrote : "Insurance groups are recommending GoFundMe as official policy - where customers can die if they can't raise the goal in time - but sure, single payer healthcare is unreasonable."

The congresswoman-elect has garnered significant attention prior to and following her November election, particularly for her progressive policy ideas and her use of social media to respond to attacks coming from right wing politicians and their supporters.

"She doesn't give a damn about what Republicans think of her," Cenk Uygur, the host of The Young Turks, pointed out last Sunday on CNN's Reliable Sources . "She welcomes their attacks and she uses social media as a jiu-jitsu to turn their attacks against them," he added.