Political Rising Star: Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez
And for once, you can take that title literally! For Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, winner in the stunning upset in the June 26th New York Democratic primary election, already has an asteroid named for her! Let’s dig in …
The takedown of 56-year-old Joseph Crowley, US Representative for New York’s 14th District for ten terms, and fourth-ranking Democrat in the House, by a 28-year old Latina running her first race, who six months ago was a bartender, sent shock waves through the Democratic Party. When the polls closed at 9 PM on June 26th in Queens, a breathless Ocasio-Cortez was perhaps among those most surprised by her win.
A member of the Democratic Socialists of America, Ocasio-Cortez focused on a staunchly progressive agenda, and a superb voter turnout effort, particularly among young people. Supporters of Crowley, who also chairs the Queens Country Democratic Party and runs the Queens political machine, simply assumed he was a shoo-in, and stayed at home. Crowley outspent Ocasio-Cortez by 10-1, but this was no squeaker election – he went down to defeat by a 15-point margin, 57-42%.
In describing her political affiliation and philosophy to Stephen Colbert, who interviewed her on “The Late Show” on the 28th, Ocasio-Cortez stated: “So for me, Democratic Socialism is about … really the value for me is that I believe that in a modern, moral and wealthy society, no person in America should be too poor to live. That’s what I feel. … Seems pretty simple.… So what that means to me is health care as a human right. It means that every child, no matter where you are born, should have access to a college or trade school education if they so choose it. And, you know, I think that no person should be homeless if we can have public structures and public policy to allow for people to have homes and food and lead a dignified life in the United States.”
Ocasio-Cortez’ campaign focused on these themes as well as the dominance of corporate donors among members of both political Parties in Washington. Three weeks before the election polls showed her 36 points down, but Donald Trump’s Justice Department gave her a boost in the minority-majority district, where the ferocious reaction to the family separation policy on the southern border gave the Latina, daughter of a father of Hispanic descent and a Puerto Rican mother, an opening to call for the abolition of ICE. Ocasio-Cortez’ platform struck a chord, and allied with an excellent get-out-the-vote effort, gave her a spectacular victory which has shaken the foundations of the Democratic political establishment nationally.
Of course, you know Trump had to spin this as somehow a victory for him, tweeting that “Big Trump Hater” Crowley had “just LOST his primary election. In other words, he’s out! That is a big one that nobody saw happening. Perhaps he should have been nicer, and more respectful, to his President!”
Yeah, ‘cause that would have endeared him to the Queens crowd! Ocasio-Cortez had a reply ready for the President: “Well you know, the President is from Queens and with all due respect, half of my district is from Queens. I don’t think he knows how to deal with a girl from the Bronx.”
Nothing in Ocasio-Cortez’ background prepared her for a successful run for Congress, except of course the stars. Born 13 October 1989 (no time available), she will be the youngest woman ever elected to Congress, assuming she wins the Democratic stronghold district in the November general election, a fair assumption.
Ocasio-Cortez’ first love was science, something displayed in her birth chart by the conjunction of Uranus, ruling science and technology, at 1 Capricorn with Saturn, ruling career, at 8 Cap. But a strong pull toward government service is implied by the presence of asteroid Washingtonia, sandwiched between these two behemoths at 2 Capricorn. Its close conjunction with Uranus signals her progressive stance, and Uranus’ close square to natal asteroid House at 0 Libra foreshadows her upset win in a race for the US House of Representatives.
If we may pause for a moment to speculate about her future in government, let’s note that House lies next to Mercury at 3 Libra, so a stint as House/House Speaker/Mercury is not out of the question someday. As well, Saturn also rules the office of the presidency, and its conjunction with Washingtonia puts an Ocasio-Cortez administration within the realm of the possible. The fact that natal asteroid Whitehouse at 23 Aquarius is exactly semisquare Saturn and at station, turning direct three days after her birth, lends support to this possibility.
So how did this middle-class urban nobody get an asteroid named for her? While in High School, she won second prize in the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair, for a project on microbiology. The Lincoln Laboratory at MIT routinely names bits of space dust for these winners, so Ocasio-Cortez was duly nominated to the heavens, her surname being ascribed to minor planet #23238.
Which turns out to be very fortunate indeed. Because asteroid Ocasio-Cortez, at 5 Leo, is combined with Nike, named for the Greek goddess of victory, at 3 Leo, and asteroid Alexandra, approximating her first name, at 0 Leo! Imagine that – both names in close proximity with a point encouraging victory, for the winner of one of the biggest upset elections in modern intra-Party Democratic politics. Not only that, but this grouping lies at the Apex of a Yod, or Finger of Destiny, with inconjunct aspects to that Uranus/Washingtonia/Saturn combination, and asteroid Victoria at 3 Pisces, named for Nike’s Roman counterpart!
Indeed, this does seem to be a destiny written in the stars!
With the Sun at 20 Libra conjoined Mars at 15, Ocasio-Cortez is a fighter, and perhaps a champion. Energetic and with leadership qualities, Ocasio-Cortez’ campaign was further infused with transformative Plutonian energies by transit Pluto at 20 Capricorn, exactly squared the Sun, bringing about not only the dramatic alteration in her own circumstances, but also encouraging her to act as the creative force of death, decay and resurrection, which is one of Pluto’s primary functions (in this case, the destruction of Crowley’s career and hold on political power, to be replaced by her own).
One’s own PNAs are typically connected to the Sun, Moon, Ascendant or Mercury in the birth chart; without a time of birth, we can’t determine if this is true for Ocasio-Cortez’ Moon or Ascendant. But both Alexandra and Ocasio-Cortez are in sextile to Mercury, which rules the naming function, while alternate masculine gender moniker Alexander exactly opposes it from 3 Aries. Additionally, asteroid Alex, a shortened form of her name (and a likely nickname among intimates) falls at 26 Capricorn, squaring the Sun.
Her opponent Joseph Crowley shows up as well. Incredibly, asteroid Josephina (a feminine gender variant of “Joseph”) falls exactly conjunct Alexandria at 0 Leo! Any time two PNAs are in exact conjunction, it indicates a strong personal connection, and a pivotal place in the biography. Asteroid Josefa at 15 Cancer squares the Sun and exactly squares Mars, indicating an adversarial relationship, while also conjoined natal Jupiter at 10 Cancer, suggesting their interaction on the political sphere, and in trine to natal Pluto at 14 Scorpio, perhaps indicating the ease (trine) with which she destroyed (Pluto) Crowley’s (Josefa) political (Jupiter) career.
I am indebted to fellow asteroid enthusiast Alison Graham for the following tidbit – there is also an asteroid “Old Joe”, and although, at 56, Crowley may not qualify for that term in a general sense, he surely does when opposed to a 28-year old-rival, exactly half his age! Ocasio-Cortez’ Old Joe asteroid at 23 Taurus is exactly sesquiquadrate her natal Saturn, showing her as a potential hindrance or impediment to him. Also, natal Damocles at 14 Aries, that doom hanging unseen overhead, closely squares Josefa, a fitting allusion to the unexpected loss Ocasio-Cortez visited upon him.
As for Joseph Crowley himself (born 16 March 1962, no time available), his time in the House is celestially noted as well. With natal asteroid Josefa at 13 Leo aligned with House at 16, and the pair opposing natal Saturn at 8 Aquarius, Crowley’s draw to the role of Representative as a career (Saturn) is obvious. Add in asteroid Queen’s, for the district he represented, in T-Square from 12 Scorpio, and we have an even clearer picture of the Representative’s jurisdiction. Queen’s conjoins Neptune at 13 Scorpio, which adds to its power the chart, but can also indicate some form of disappointment coming from that quarter. Neptune is said to rule socialism as a political philosophy, and Crowley’s defeat by a particular Democratic Socialist is prefigured in a stunning combination of asteroids Alexander, Alexandra and Ocasio-Cortez, at 7, 8 and 16 Taurus respectively, which creates a Grand Cross of this pattern.
Really? Is there anything but Fate?
Crowley’s DC bona fides are seen in the conjunction of Washingtonia at 28 Pisces with the Sun at 25; asteroid Josephina at 20 Gemini squares these (with Josephina conforming to the typical pattern of Sun/PNA contacts). And natal Nike at 26 Sagittarius forms a T-Square – no doubt, Crowely was one of the winningest members of Congress, with ten terms under his belt, and the last 14 years unopposed in the primary. But his natal Nemesis, that point of undoing, is here as well; at 1 Capricorn, it’s an exact match for Ocasio-Cortez’ Uranus, and it was her extreme brand of progressive politics that ultimately brought him down.
Asteroid Victoria at 8 Gemini is exactly squared Pluto at 8 Virgo and exactly trined Saturn at 8 Aquarius, itself a symbol of entrenched power (Pluto) in government (Saturn), which Crowley, as fourth ranking Democratic member in the House and head of the Democratic Party in Queens, certainly wielded. But this wasn’t enough to keep his string of career victories going, with Ocasio-Cortez’ own Nemesis at 11 Sagittarius opposing his Victoria. Asteroid Old Joe at 27 Libra is exactly trine Jupiter at 27 Aquarius and exactly sextile Uranus at 27 Leo (which exactly oppose each other), establishing Crowley (Old Joe) as a force in progressive (Uranus) politics (Jupiter), but in the final analysis, it was the ultra-progressive vote that got him. Mercury rules the voting process and elections generally, and Crowley’s Mercury at 1 Pisces is exactly sextile his Nemesis, and was no match for Ocasio-Cortez’ Mercury, which is exactly aspect to both asteroids denoting winning, sextile natal Nike at 3 Leo and inconjunct natal Victoria at 3 Pisces.
Of course PNAs for the contenders were well in evidence on Election Day itself.
At first blush, with Josefa at 9 Cancer conjoined the 5 Cancer Sun, Nike at 22 Aries sesquiquadrate Jospehina at 9 Virgo, and Old Joe at 9 Taurus conjunct Victoria at 10, this looks like a lead-pipe cinch for Crowley. The Sun shows the day’s focus, and often brings positive attention (though in reality, this is a neutral placement, neither inherently good nor bad, simply denoting visibility), and both winning asteroids are in contact with PNAs representing the incumbent.
So what went wrong?
First, Nike also opposes Alexandra at 26 Libra, and is conjoined TNO Eris at 24 Aries. The opposition is a stronger aspect and trumps the sesquiquadrate, so this round goes to Ocasio-Cortez. Eris here indicates the downtrodden, the restless, resentful, disrespected populations who give voice to their frustrations. The conjunction with Nike says that whichever contender they adhere to, will find the victory. Eris’ opposition to Alexandra gives them a clear view of Ocasio-Cortez as an option, and for a Latina in a minority-majority district, allows them to see her as one of their own, oppressed and marginalized, as opposed to that “Old” (white man) “Joe”.
Secondly, although Josefa is with the Sun, it’s also opposing Saturn (actually, the Sun/Saturn opposition was exact that day, so this aspect is at its peak). Saturn is a funny customer; when you’re young, he denies success because you haven’t learned your lessons or mastered your craft; in early to mid-adulthood you come into your own, and Saturn doles out the rewards; but as you age, Saturn imposes restrictions again, and encourages withdrawal and retreat. So having reaped his reward for twenty years, Crowley was due for a bit of Saturnian obstruction, and Josefa opposing Saturn said, “hold on there; you’ve gone quite far enough.” Josefa/Saturn could also make Crowley look older than he was, in sharp contrast to youthful, vigorous, Ocasio-Cortez.
Thirdly, Josephina opposes Neptune at 16 Pisces. Neptune is very slippery, hard to get a handle on. Things evaporate before your eyes, leads disappear, efforts become sidetracked, advantages fade away. Confusion, misperception, and a denial of reality can lead to disappointment, frustration and disillusionment. Josephina opposed Neptune puts Crowley on very boggy ground indeed. Icing the cake here is asteroid House, which forms a T-Square with Josephina/Neptune, from 13 Sagittarius. This provides the outlet for the tension between Josephina and Neptune, a focus for the disappointment to come.
Finally, Old Joe is not alone with Victoria. Just down the celestial pike, and still within orb of both, is our old friend Nemesis, at 17 Taurus. Put Nemesis with Victoria, and winning is contraindicated. In effect, they cancel each other out. Plus, on the other side, Old Joe meets his competition – Alex is at 0 Taurus, with Queen’s at 2 Taurus, and Uranus at 1 Taurus. Sure, Old Joe also conjoins Queen’s, but Alex is a lot closer, enabling Ocasio-Cortez to more closely identify with the district. Uranus of course sows disruption and upsets the balance, also indicating a rebellion or revolution against the established order, in this case, Old Joe (Cowley) himself, with Alex (Ocasio-Cortez) carrying mutiny’s banner.
And let’s not forget Mars, at 9 Aquarius, and stationing that day. The square to Uranus from a Mars which is standing still in the heavens pumps a great deal of energy (Mars) into the insurgency (Uranus). The fact that Mars aligns with Crowley’s natal Saturn at 8 Aquarius shows him to be in the fight of his life for his career.
One further point in Ocasio-Cortez’ favor – asteroid Ocasio-Cortez at 1 Sagittarius is running with asteroid Karma at 2 Sag, signaling a fated time frame for her. Ocasio-Cortez is also exactly inconjunct Uranus, and with Karma closely squares her natal Victoria at 3 Pisces. Victory was in the cards.
Looking at the day compared to the candidates’ charts, we see transit Alexandra at 26 Libra is hovering atop Crowley’s natal Old Joe at 27 Libra, effectively smothering him, while also squared to Josephina at 0 Leo in Ocasio-Cortez’ chart, indicating the struggle between them.
Transit Old Joe, Victoria and Nemesis oppose Crowley’s natal Neptune/Queen’s, evoking the potential for things going sour in the district which that pairing suggests. These also square Crowley’s natal Saturn, in this case pushing limitation, as do transit Alex/Uranus/Queen’s. And the early Taurus points square Ocasio-Cortez’ natal Alexandra/Nike/ Ocasio-Cortez grouping in early Leo, stimulating her native gift for winning.
A quite remarkable outcome for this election, but what does it say about the mood of the Democratic electorate for the upcoming midterms? “Fired up and ready to go”, as Obama might put it. But have they gone too far left to bring the middle of the country with them? As each Party becomes more extreme, more a caricature of itself, where will everyday moderates and independents go?
We’ll know in four months…