Ted Cruz and [checks notes] Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez are possibly teaming up [checks notes] for a second time, on [squints once again at notes] over-the-counter access to birth control.
The progressive star and Democratic representative from the Bronx wants to make birth control available over the counter. Right now, the Food and Drug Administration requires people to obtain prescriptions to get birth control.
“Psst!” Ocasio-Cortez tweeted last week. “Birth control should be over-the-counter, pass it on.”
Cruz responded Wednesday by tweeting at Ocasio-Cortez that he agreed — and the two should collaborate on a “simple, clean” bill to make birth control an over-the-counter drug.
If it seems odd that one of the most conservative members of Congress and one of the most progressive would collaborate on a bill about reproductive health, that’s because it would be odd: Cruz is vehemently anti-abortion, and he has a spotty record when it comes to access to contraception, such as when he likened emergency contraception like Plan B to “abortifacients” (a substance that induces abortions).
Ocasio-Cortez, who unabashedly supports abortion rights, has yet to respond — and might be a bit more hesitant this time, considering Cruz’s opposition to safe access to abortion. But the potential collaboration would mark the second occasion of the two ostensible enemies teaming up on a common issue. The unlikely detente comes at a time when moderates in Ocasio-Cortez’s own party is hesitant to unite on progressive causes like Medicare for All and a Green New Deal.
AOC previously called for a ban on former lawmakers becoming lobbyists, a practice often known as the “revolving door” in Washington, D.C. Former members of Congress leave the halls of the Capitol Building, either voluntarily or because they fail to get re-elected, and enter the private sector to make big bucks lobbying for corporations. In fact, ex-congressman Joe Crowley, the very man whom Ocasio-Cortez shockingly unseated, is now a lobbyist for a firm that represents the fossil fuel industry and private prisons.
After Ocasio-Cortez called for a ban in May, Cruz responded in a tweet that he agreed with her and that they should work together on a bill. Representatives for both lawmakers confirmed that legislation is actually in the works.
"It's super bizarre. Really weird. Never thought in my life that one of my first pushes would be alongside Ted Cruz," Ocasio-Cortez said this month of her collaboration with Cruz. "It really shows what the true spirit of not being partisan is, in that bipartisanship doesn't mean, let's come together to go to war and lower taxes on the rich.”
Cover image: Republican Sen. Ted Cruz, from Texas, on the left (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik) and Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, from New York on the right (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call via AP Images)