Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Drops in on ‘Donkey Kong 64’ Twitch Stream

She discussed ‘Donkey Kong 64’ gameplay and expressed her support for both stream and the rights of transgender individuals.

This story originally appeared on PCMag

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a fresh York Democrat, jumped on the voice chat of a Twitch stream on Sunday. It’s a notable merging of politics and gaming, but it is also only one element of an extraordinary story of protest, charity, and social network.

On Jan. 18, British Twitch streamer HBomberguy started a marathon playthrough of the Nintendo 64 game Donkey Kong 64, with the intention of raising money for the transgender charity Mermaids UK. It quickly found attention on internet sites, reaching over 25,000 simultaneous viewers and raising over $220,000 by Sunday night.

Fifty hours in to the stream, Rep. Ocasio-Cortez joined the stream’s voice chat for an impromptu discussion with HBomberguy and his fellow streamers. She discussed American and British social politics and Donkey Kong 64 gameplay, expressed her support for the stream, and for the rights of transgender individuals.

She made no specific policy announcements on the stream, and she’s not the first person in Congress to become listed on a Twitch stream. Nonetheless it seems to be an all natural progression on her behalf. Ocasio-Cortez is probably the more tech-savvy members of Congress, frequently giving an answer to critics and fans alike on Twitter. USA Today reports that she was even asked recently to instruct fellow House Democrats how exactly to utilize the service.

Through the stream, Ocasio-Cortez said "I’ve never owned an N64, but I believe it’s most likely the best system of every one of them. I used to visit my cousin’s house constantly, and she had Super Mario 64, Pokemon Snap, and probably a small number of other activities."

Here’s @aoc discussing how Nintendo 64 was the very best system. She’s on @twitch assisting to raise money for trans kids. pic.twitter.com/cJIfUif1mv

– New Super Blood Wolf Moon Bros. U Deluxe (@GenePark) January 20, 2019

Ocasio-Cortez will not identify as a gamer, and her love for the N64 could possibly be viewed as empty grandstanding, but invoking Pokemon Snap without mentioning the a lot more successful and critically claimed The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time is notable. As may be the particular Twitch stream she made a decision to drop in on, given the controversy it has generated over the pond.

HBomberguy began his charity stream as a reply to pressure put upon the United Kingdom’s National Lottery to examine funds designed for Mermaids UK. Mermaids UK has been criticized by anti-trans activists recently for the support it includes transgender youth. Specifically, comedian Graham Linehan pushed the hashtag #ThanksGraham on Twitter during HBomberguy’s stream in response to the amount of money it raised. Linehan, co-creator of Father Ted and The IT Crowd , has been accused of harassing trans activists on Twitter, and compared trans activism to Nazi Germany.

Through the stream, Ocasio-Cortez argued that discrimination "is a core reason behind the economic hardship" endured by those in the trans community.

Here’s @aoc on @twitch discussing how trans discrimination is a “core reason” for economic hardship pic.twitter.com/JruOD5lcjM

– New Super Blood Wolf Moon Bros. U Deluxe (@GenePark) January 20, 2019

Twitch streamers raising money for charity is nothing new. Weekly before HBomberguy’s stream, Games Done Quick completed its Awesome Games Done Quick (AGDQ) 2019 marathon, where a large number of speedrunners (gamers who complete certain games as quickly as possible) played through games during the period of weekly for charity. AGDQ 2019 raised $2.4 million for the Prevent Cancer Foundation.

Games Done Quick’s biannual marathons, AGDQ and Summer Games Done Quick (SGDQ), have raised over $19 million for charity during the last seven years.

Donkey Kong 64 could be beaten in approximately 25 minutes, though HBomberguy pursued the "101 percent" completion category, which include collecting every item in the overall game furthermore to beating the ultimate boss. Speedrunners have completed the overall game in that category within six hours. During writing, HBomberguy hasn’t yet achieved this category after 51 hours of streaming and approximately 38 hours of gameplay beyond commentary and chat interaction.

On Twitter, Ocasio-Cortez said her participation in HBomberguy’s stream was designed to help turn "Lemons into lemonade." <