Skip to main content

Sign up for our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values. Direct to your inbox.

Strikingly, the scene from the comic book series from which the quote is taken occurs in a prison cafeteria—a potentially provocative, though perhaps fluid, metaphor for what Congress has become to many lawmakers. (Photo: Screenshot/"Rorschach")

Amid Report Dems Trying to "Rein In" Ocasio-Cortez, Congresswoman Responds With Fiery Comic Book Reference

"None of you understand. I'm not locked up in here with YOU. You're locked up in here with ME."

Jon Queally

After Politico put out a story on Friday characterizing a group of Democrats in the House as "exasperated" over the manner in which Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) has used her media savvy and unabashed progressivism to challenge party norms, the newly-elected congresswoman let it be known that those who want to "rein in" her brand of politics are not likely to find success.

Instead of letting the article go unmentioned, Ocasio-Cortez invoked a quote by the comic book protagonist Rorschach, created by Alan Moore.

Strikingly, the scene from the comic book series from which the quote is taken occurs in a prison cafeteria—a potentially provocative, though perhaps fluid, metaphor for what Congress has become to many lawmakers.

In the 2015 film version of "The Watchmen," with the character of Rorshach played by Jackie Earle Haley, things do not end well for those who try to "rein" him in:

Possibly the "crying while laughing" emoji Ocasio-Cortez included in her tweet was a signal to all that her response should be taken in good fun. For many, it certainly was:

Correction: This piece has been updated to reflect that "The Watchmen" was the name of the film in which Rorshach appears.


Our work is licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0). Feel free to republish and share widely.

... We've had enough. The 1% own and operate the corporate media. They are doing everything they can to defend the status quo, squash dissent and protect the wealthy and the powerful. The Common Dreams media model is different. We cover the news that matters to the 99%. Our mission? To inform. To inspire. To ignite change for the common good. How? Nonprofit. Independent. Reader-supported. Free to read. Free to republish. Free to share. With no advertising. No paywalls. No selling of your data. Thousands of small donations fund our newsroom and allow us to continue publishing. Can you chip in? We can't do it without you. Thank you.

Watch: Bernie Sanders Hosts 'Saving American Democracy' Town Hall

"Republicans in state after state are working to make it harder and harder to vote. We can't let them succeed."

Common Dreams staff ·


As SCOTUS Considers 'Extinguishing' Right to Abortion, Calls Mount for Congress to 'Step Up'

"Despite the protections that the legal framework like Roe provides, it has never been enough," said one doctor. "We continue to work toward reproductive justice."

Jessica Corbett ·


'Time to Get the Job Done': Stacey Abrams Launches New Georgia Gubernatorial Bid

"Now more than ever, it's clear Brian Kemp's days as governor are numbered."

Brett Wilkins ·


US Must Tackle Marine Plastics Pollution 'From Source to Sea': Report

The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine study found that the U.S. is responsible for about a quarter of the plastics that enter the world's oceans each year.

Brett Wilkins ·


First US Omicron Case Confirmed as WHO Chief Decries Failure to Share Vaccines Globally

Factors including low vaccine coverage have created "a recipe for breeding and amplifying variants," the top health official said.

Andrea Germanos ·

Support our work.

We are independent, non-profit, advertising-free and 100% reader supported.

Subscribe to our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values.
Direct to your inbox.

Subscribe to our Newsletter.


Common Dreams, Inc. Founded 1997. Registered 501(c3) Non-Profit | Privacy Policy
Common Dreams Logo