Meet the Four Congresswomen of ‘the Squad’

Meet the Four Congresswomen of ‘the Squad’

07.17.19
Photo: Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images
07.17.19

In the past few days, you may have heard a lot about “the Squad,” a group of four Democratic freshmen congresswomen who are going head-to-head with both their own party leadership and President Donald Trump.

On Sunday, Trump tweeted about “‘Progressive’ Democratic Congresswomen” who should “go back and help fix the totally broken and crime-infested places from which they came.”

Many interpreted the string of tweets as a racist attack on the four minority congresswomen — Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ilhan Omar, Ayanna Pressley, and Rashida Tlaib. The House of Representatives voted Tuesday on a resolution condemning the president’s “racist comments” targeting the lawmakers.

So who are the four congresswomen known as “the Squad?” 

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

Ocasio-Cortez represents the 14th District of New York, a diverse, immigrant-filled region encompassing parts of the Bronx and Queens. She is a proud socialist and, along with fellow Squad-member Rashida Tlaib, a member of the Democratic Socialists of America.

Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

While Ocasio-Cortez has staunchly supported immigration and gender equality bills, her most prominent activism is for environmental legislation. She sponsored the Green New Deal, a sweeping plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, invest in green energy, support economic equality and more. Although the Senate rejected the resolution, Ocasio-Cortez’s environmental activism continues to gain support from people including presidential candidates.

Ilhan Omar

Omar represents the 5th District of Minnesota. Her election in the 2018 midterms marked many firsts — she is the first Somali-American member of Congress, the first woman of color to represent Minnesota, and, along with Tlaib, one of the first two Muslim women to serve in Congress. Omar is a supporter of progressive legislation such as Medicare for All and College for All, as well as a critic of Israel.

Photo: Yasin Ozturk/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

She has also condemned the Trump administration’s immigration policies. She and the other Squad members were the only House Democrats to vote against the passage of H.R. 3401, a bill that would appropriate emergency funds to assist migrants at the U.S.–Mexico border. Omar cited the bill’s funding of ICE and other federal agencies as her reason for voting against the bill: “Throwing more money at the very organizations committing human rights abuses — and the very Administration directing these human rights abuses — is not a solution.”

Rashida Tlaib

Tlaib hails from Michigan’s 13th Congressional District, which includes part of Detroit. She is Palestinian-American and, along with Omar, one of the first two Muslim congresswomen. 

Photo: Mark Wilson/Getty Images

After being sworn in, Tlaib became a viral sensation — garnering both passionate support and condemnation — after saying, “We’re going to impeach the motherf**ker,” in reference to Trump. Since then, Tlaib has pressed forward with calls for impeachment, making it a pillar of her platform. 

Ayanna Pressley

Pressley represents Massachusetts’ 7th Congressional District, which includes much of Boston. She is the first black congresswoman from Massachusetts.

Photo: Scott Eisen/Getty Images

Pressley, like her Squad-mates, has pushed the Democratic Party leftwards when it comes to issues like immigration, labor reform and the environment. Pressley also proposed an amendment to the For the People Act of 2019, a bill addressing voting access and equality, that would lower the voting age from 18 to 16. Pressley defended youth activism and voting, saying in a press release that “Our young people are at the forefront of some of the most existential crises facing our communities and our society at large.”

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