Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) (AOC) made a disconcerting plea Tuesday, Dec. 10, at a House Oversight Committee hearing while dealing with paid family leave (PFL).
“Do we know how long puppies are allowed to stay with their mothers after a dog has given birth?” AOC asked in an attempt to refute the arguments just presented by the spokeswoman of a conservative nonprofit foundation.
“Uh, eight weeks. So, the market has decided that women and people who give birth deserve less time with their children than a dog,” AOC said in reference to the average period after which puppies are usually sold or given away.
In so doing, AOC sought to counter the thorough study by Rachel Greszler, a researcher in Economics, Budget, and Rights at the Heritage Foundation’s Institute for Economic Freedom, who has reiterated that it is “beneficial” for parents, particularly mothers, to be home with their children in the weeks or months following birth.
However, “a woman who has given birth to six children, I find being compared to a breeding dog with puppies incredibly offensive. What AOC failed to point out is the reason many states require puppies to spend at least eight weeks with their mothers is in the context of them being sold to people after that period,” Greszler said in a statement quoted by Fox News.
‘A new national entitlement’
According to Greszler’s report titled “Paid Family Leave: Avoiding a New National Entitlement,” the six-week paid leave program proposed by U.S. President Trump for new parents “could quickly inflate to include paid sick, medical, and caregiver leave…” which could cost the country hundreds of billions of dollars more per year.
The advocates of paid leave have described the proposal as “amateurish, inadequate, insulting” claiming that “on literally every aspect … it falls short” instead of “applauding” the president’s initiative, she added.
The federal government can improve families’ access to PFL and even paid vacations by enacting state tax reform, Greszler continued.
A state regulation that favors growth by encouraging flexible working arrangements between employees and employers that does not cause high costs to the public coffers, she concluded.
“Government paid family leave will hurt the very women it’s supposed to help. It will mean the tax dollars of the poor going to rich and middle-class workers, leaving many women across the country worse off,” Heritage Foundation Communications Manager Gloria Taylor tweeted hours after the debate.