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  • Thursday, 29 February 2024
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez might have violated House rules with Met Gala gifts, watchdog says

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez might have violated House rules with Met Gala gifts, watchdog says

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., is facing criticism over her attendance at the Met Gala on Monday, with a conservative watchdog group claiming that she may have violated House ethics rules by accepting free tickets to the event.

The freshman congresswoman made headlines for her appearance at the annual fundraising gala, wearing a white gown with "Tax the Rich" written in bold red letters on the back. The dress was designed by Aurora James, who has been vocal in her support of progressive causes.

According to the watchdog group National Legal and Policy Center, Ocasio-Cortez's attendance at the event could be a violation of House ethics rules, which prohibit lawmakers from accepting gifts worth more than $50.

"Unless AOC disclosed receipt of the gift, it appears that she may have violated the House gift rule," said Tom Anderson, director of the NLPC's Government Integrity Project.

However, Ocasio-Cortez's office has pushed back on the allegations, arguing that the congresswoman did not violate any rules.

"We all had to be vaccinated in order to attend and wear masks inside," Lauren Hitt, a spokesperson for Ocasio-Cortez, told Fox News. "Of course AOC complied with that."

Hitt also pointed out that Ocasio-Cortez did not actually pay for her ticket to the event, but was invited as a guest of the designer.

"The Medium post clearly states that Congresswoman Ocasio-Cortez bought her own ticket to the event," Hitt said. "However, she did not pay for the gown."

The controversy comes as Ocasio-Cortez has been a vocal advocate for progressive policies such as raising taxes on the wealthy and increasing access to healthcare and education. The "Tax the Rich" message on her dress was seen by some as a bold statement in support of those policies.

However, the congresswoman's attendance at the Met Gala, which is known for its extravagant displays of wealth and opulence, has drawn criticism from some who argue that it is at odds with her progressive values.

Ocasio-Cortez defended her decision to attend the event in a statement posted on social media, arguing that it was an opportunity to bring attention to issues of economic inequality.

"The time is now for childcare, healthcare, and climate action for all. Tax the Rich," she wrote. "And yes, BEFORE anybody starts wilding out - NYC elected officials are regularly invited to and attend the Met due to our responsibilities in overseeing our city's cultural institutions that serve the public. I was one of several in attendance in this evening."

 

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., is facing criticism over her attendance at the Met Gala on Monday, with a conservative watchdog group claiming that she may have violated House ethics rules by accepting free tickets to the event.

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