In Her Own Words: Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Describes the “Intentional Cruelty” She Saw Inside a Migrant Detention Center

Listen to the congresswoman recount shocking conditions at the border, on this special edition of the Mother Jones Podcast.

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, of New York, gets in an SUV after touring the inside of the Border Patrol station in Clint, Texas, on Monday.Cedar Attanasio/AP

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On Monday, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) joined a 16-member congressional delegation that got a rare glimpse inside three highly fortified migrant detention facilities, which she has referred to as “concentration camps.” Mother Jones contributor Jonathan Katz, who writes the “The Long Version” newsletter, accompanied the delegation to the sites, though reporters were not permitted inside. Later, he sat down with Ocasio-Cortez to get her perspective on what had happened during the day, how we got here, and where things might go next. Click here to read Katz’s dispatch from Texas and a full transcript of the interview. And listen below to our exclusive sit-down with the congresswoman who has catapulted the issue to national attention, on this bonus episode of the Mother Jones Podcast:

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We've never been very good at being conservative.

And usually, that serves us well in doing the ambitious, hard-hitting journalism that you turn to Mother Jones for. But it also means we can't afford to come up short when it comes to scratching together the funds it takes to keep our team firing on all cylinders, and the truth is, we finished our budgeting cycle on June 30 about $100,000 short of our online goal.

This is no time to come up short. It's time to fight like hell, as our namesake would tell us to do, for a democracy where minority rule cannot impose an extreme agenda, where facts matter, and where accountability has a chance at the polls and in the press. If you value our reporting and you can right now, please help us dig out of the $100,000 hole we're starting our new budgeting cycle in with an always-needed and always-appreciated donation today.

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