Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) is clapping back after a conservative group filed an ethics complaint about her attendance at the Met Gala in a borrowed designer dress.
Politicians are subject to strict rules meant to prevent bribery and influence. The group alleges that the free ticket and dress ran afoul of the measures but did not complain about any other politicians who attended.
On Twitter, the group alleged that “her $35,000 ticket and custom designer gown fail to meet any definition of “official duties” and warrant a full investigation into her attendance.”
Tickets are traditionally given to New York federal, state, and local politicians as the Metropolitan Museum of Art is a public museum owned and managed by the city government. The dress was loaned to her for the event.
Ocasio-Cortez’s gown was designed by Aurora James, creative director and founder of the couture brand Brother Vellies. James is a Black immigrant woman who champions Black business owners. The white gown had “Tax the rich” emblazoned on it in red script.
“The time is now for childcare, healthcare, and climate action for all,” Ocasio-Cortez noted on Instagram along with a photo of herself being fitted for the dress. “Tax the Rich.”
“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.”
After the American Accountability Foundation filed the complaint, the Congresswoman responded to the controversy online.
“I thought about the criticism I’d get, but honestly I and my body have been so heavily and relentlessly policed from all corners politically since the moment I won my election that it’s kind of become expected and normalized to me,” she said in response to a question on her Instagram story.
“The irony is that when women in power take the prospect of criticism to be cautious in their actions, they are then criticized for being ‘inauthentic’ and ‘too calculated.’ Ultimately the haters hated and the people who are thoughtful were thoughtful.”
“But we all had a conversation about Taxing the Rich in front of the very people who lobby against it, and punctured the 4th wall of excess and spectacle.”
We filed a formal complaint against AOC for her blatant ethics violations at the NYC Met Gala.
Her $35,000 ticket and custom designer gown fail to meet any definition of "official duties," and warrant a full investigation into her attendance.https://t.co/TeHmAykWrI
— American Accountability Foundation (@ameracctfnd) September 14, 2021
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