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Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

She has yet to endorse a 2020 presidential contender, but Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) has offered her take on a handful of candidacies and worked with several White House hopefuls on legislation.

Why it matters: Since her improbable 2018 win over Rep. Joe Crowley, at the time the No. 4 House Democrat, Ocasio-Cortez has become a household name. The freshman lawmaker has 5.5 million Twitter followers, giving her commentary influence. Her district is 49% Hispanic and heavily Democratic. However, many consider her, as a democratic socialist, the face of the far-left. Just how desirable her favor would be to more moderate candidates is unclear.

Where it stands:

  • Sen. Elizabeth Warren: In May, Warren and Ocasio-Cortez teamed up to probe Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin on his role in the Sears' bankruptcy proceedings and possible conflicts of interest, according to CNBC. Sears sued Mnuchin and 3 other board members in April over alleged wrongful transfers of $2 billion in company assets. A bankruptcy hearing is scheduled for Sept. 18.
  • Sen. Kamala Harris: The two joined forces on a bill to help individuals with criminal records obtain fair housing, reports CNN. The bill was referred to the House Committee on Financial Services in mid-July.
    • Another proposal announced on July 29 focuses on ensuring climate plans include low-income communities, per the New York Times. The period for public comment on the draft legislation ends Sept. 30.
  • Former Vice President Joe Biden: In an interview with Vogue, Ocasio-Cortez said she doesn't think Biden would be a "pragmatic" choice. The latest polls show Biden with a significant lead in the Democratic presidential race, the New York Times reports.
  • Sen. Bernie Sanders: In May, the two introduced legislation capping consumer loans and preventing credit card interest rates from rising above 15%. The legislation has been referred to the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs and the House Committee on Financial Services.
    • Ocasio-Cortez worked on Sanders' 2016 presidential campaign.
  • Former Rep. John Delaney: After Delaney said he supported single-payer health care, but not Medicare for All, Ocasio-Cortez tweeted at him to "sashay away" from the 2020 race. Delaney challenged Ocasio-Cortez via Twitter in early June to a debate, writing they both have "the same goal, universal healthcare for everyone, we just have different ways of getting there." Ocasio-Cortez rejected the offer.
  • Sen. Cory Booker: In Booker's spat with Biden over the former VP's comments on segregationist senators, Ocasio-Cortez said Booker didn't owe Biden an apology.

Of note: On The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, Ocasio-Cortez praised the candidates who spoke Spanish during the first rounds of debates, including former Rep. Beto O'Rourke, Sen. Cory Booker and former Housing Secretary Julián Castro, saying, "It was a good gesture to the fact that we are a diverse country."

The bottom line: In a New Yorker interview, Ocasio-Cortez said she had no plans to endorse any candidate anytime soon, but she wasn't sure whether she'd wait for a nominee to emerge.

Go deeper: AOC sued after Trump court ruling for blocking Twitter users

Go deeper

1 hour ago - Health

CDC: It's time for "universal face mask use"

Photo: Paul Hennessy/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty

The CDC is urging “universal face mask use” for the first time since the coronavirus pandemic began, citing recent case spikes as the U.S. has entered a phase of “high-level transmission” before winter officially begins.

Why it matters: Daily COVID-related deaths across the U.S. hit a new record on Wednesday. Face coverings have been shown to increase protection of the wearer and those around them, despite some Americans' reluctance to use them.

3 hours ago - World

Saudi Arabia and Qatar near deal to end standoff, sources say

Qatar's prime minister (R) attends the 2019 Gulf Cooperation Council summit in Saudi Arabia. Photo: Fayez Nureldine/AFP via Getty

Saudi Arabia and Qatar are close to a deal to end the diplomatic crisis in the Gulf following U.S.-mediated reconciliation talks this week, sources familiar with the talks tell me.

Why it matters: Restoring relations between Saudi Arabia and Qatar would bring a sense of stability back to the Gulf after a 3.5 year standoff. It could also notch a last-minute achievement for the Trump administration before Jan. 20.

House passes bill to decriminalize marijuana

Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore.), a longtime marijuana legalization advocate and co-sponsor of the bill. Photo: Pete Marovich For The Washington Post via Getty Images

The House on Friday voted 228-164 in favor of the Marijuana Opportunity Reinvestment and Expungement (MORE) Act, marking the first time a congressional chamber has voted in favor of decriminalizing marijuana at the federal level.

Why it matters: The Washington Post describes the bill as a "landmark retreat in the nation’s decades-long war on drugs," which has disproportionately affected people of color.

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