A group of newly-elected Republican House members, including former NFL player Burgess Owens, have banded together to create a “Freedom Force” to oppose Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s (D-N.Y.) “Squad.”
“This group will give a contrast to the hard left,” Owens, who won a House race in Utah this month, said on Fox News’ The Ingraham Angle on Friday. “We have ‘Freedom Force’ versus ‘Squad.'”
“The Squad” refers to four hard-left Democratic representatives led by AOC, a self-described “democratic socialist.” AOC and her allies — Reps. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.), Ayanna Pressley (D-Mass.), and Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.) — won their House seats in 2018 and won re-election this year.
Owens said the “Freedom Force,” made up of women and people of color, will protect small business owners.
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“Business ownership is the foundation of our freedom. It’s where our middle class comes from,” the former NFL player said on Fox & Friends Weekend on Sunday.
The group reportedly includes at least eight Republican House members, Reps.-elect Nicole Malliotakis (R-N.Y.), Michelle Steel (R-Calif.), Stephanie Bice (R-Okla.), Victoria Spartz (R-Ind.), Carlos Gimenes (R-Fla.), Maria Elvira Salazar (R-Fla.), Byron Donalds (R-Fla.), and Owens.
“We have different cultures, backgrounds, colors. But what we have in common is that we have a love for our country… and we’re going to make sure we stay free,” Owens said.
“I think what you’re going to see is a group of individuals who are going to serve as a counterbalance to the values of the socialist squad,” Malliotakis said on CNN’s State of the Union on Sunday. She called the group a “natural alliance.”
“We don’t believe we should be dismantling the economy. We don’t believe we should be destroying free-market principles. We don’t believe in the Green New Deal. We don’t believe in packing the courts,” Malliotakis explained.
Republicans picked up key House seats in the 2020 election, bringing a new record number of pro-life women into Congress. Republicans gained votes among racial minorities and a few Cuban-American Republicans won House seats in Florida.