“I want to create a force within my freshman class that will have to be reckoned with. A force of reason, a force for freedom, a force for democracy,” Florida GOP Congresswoman-elect Maria Elvira Salazar said, according to NBC News.
Salazar is seeking to form her own version of “the Squad” with Republican first-term members of Congress, Salazar told NBC News today. It will be called “The Force.”
Salazar, a Cuban American and former broadcast journalist, joined one of the most diverse freshman Republican classes ever when she defeated Rep. Donna Shalala (D) to represent Florida in November. A total of eight incoming congressmen and women identify as a person of color or a minority, according to NBC News.
“The Force,” which has been embraced by newcomers like Nicole Malliotakis (R) and Victoria Spartz (R), seeks to dismantle what it views as “democratic socialism.” “When I hear this democratic socialism that is being presented within the Democratic Party, I can only tell you that only brings misery, oppression and exile. And how do I know? Because I have lived it and I have covered it,” Salazar said.
Nicole Malliotakis (R), who is Greek American and is set to represent New York City in Congress, agreed. “We need to form our own ‘Squad.’ We have a group of new Republicans who love America. We value freedom, liberty and opportunity,” Malliotakis told The New York Post.
Spartz, who will represent Indiana, grew up in Ukraine and said that she has noticed similarities between her home country and the U.S. “I grew up in a socialistic country, the Socialist Republic of Ukraine,” she told Fox News. “I saw what happens when it runs out of money and it is not pretty. And now we’re building socialism. I’m kind of going full circles. I can tell you what is going to be next. It’s very sad for me to see that.”
Former United Nations Ambassador Nikki Haley touted the newly formed ‘Freedom Squad’ made up of Republican women in Congress and told Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez to “move over.”
Haley tweeted Friday. “Move over AOC meet @NMalliotakis, a descendent of Cuban immigrants who experienced the dangers of communism and socialism up-close, who has started the Freedom Squad,” Haley tweeted Friday. “Joining her are @CarlosGimenezFL, @MaElviraSalazar, & @Victoria_Spartz. We welcome the Freedom Squad to DC!”
“The Squad” was formed by Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.), Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.), Ayanna Pressley (D-Mass.) and Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.) in 2018. All four women were reelected to Congress in this year’s election. NBC News reported that Omar’s response was, “I mean it sounds ridiculous to me. I think they think they’re in high school. We’re in Congress.”