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Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., said Tuesday that she thought she might die during a “traumatizing” close encounter amid the chaos of last week’s deadly breach of the U.S. Capitol by pro-Trump rioters.
“I can tell you that I had a very close encounter where I thought I was going to die,” she said during an Instagram Live. “And you have all of those thoughts where, at the end of your life…all of these thoughts come rushing to you. And that’s what happened to a lot of us on Wednesday and I did not think – I did not know if I was going to make it to the end of that day alive.”
She said she didn’t just mean it generally but in a “very, very specific sense.”
The congresswoman gave no details, saying she wasn’t sure if she was allowed to completely discuss what happened for security reasons.
It wasn’t an exaggeration to say that “many, many members of the House were nearly assassinated,” she told her followers.
“We were very lucky that things happened in certain minutes that allowed members to escape the House floor but many of us nearly and narrowly escaped death,” she added.
She called many of the Capitol police and others who supported them “heroic” for putting themselves in harm’s way to protect those inside the Capitol but said it was clear that some officers were sympathetic to the rioters.
“To run [in fear] in the nation’s Capital…and not know if an officer is there to help you or harm you is also quite traumatizing,” she said.
Two Capitol Police officers have been suspended for their actions during the riots and several more are under investigation, Rep. Tim Ryan, D-Ohio, said Monday.
Ocasio-Cortez said she didn’t even feel safe in the secure location members were taken to because she had to hide with “QAnon and white supremacist” sympathizing members who she said she felt would be willing to reveal her location and allow her to be hurt or kidnapped.
Following the riots, she has called on President Trump, Sens. Josh Hawley and Ted Cruz and any other Republicans who “amplified lies to undermine our democracy, encouraged an attack on our Capitol, and tried to overturn our election” to resign.
“This is how democracy can burn,” she said. “It is fragile. We must cherish it. And they didn’t. And they don’t. So they need to leave. Donald Trump needs to leave. Ted Cruz needs to leave. Josh Hawley needs to get out. They need to get out.”
Fox News’ Louis Casiano contributed to this report.
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