On Wednesday, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), was announced that she is currently being investigated by the House Ethics Committee.
The notification was made via an official statement by the chairwoman and ranking member (i.e. a Democrat and Republican), noting that the law requires disclosure and does not prove guilt. Here’s how it reads.
BREAKING: The House Ethics Committee has opened an investigation into Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez pic.twitter.com/fccV52bPZz
— Katelyn Caralle (@Katelyn_Caralle) December 7, 2022
This is more than an acknowledgment of a referral. Referrals can be made against anyone. The committee grants an extension of the case to indicate that they have enough evidence to conduct a full investigation. It’s unclear where that will lead, but it is a big deal that one of the biggest Democrats stars is being credibly charged with ethics violations.
There is much speculation about what this could mean. Many believe it is related to Ocasio Cortez’s “tax the wealthy” gown she wore to the Met Gala. Rumors circulated at the time that Ocasio-Cortez was given the gown and the tickets to the gala. This could have been considered improper gifts according to ethics and campaign finance regulations.
American Accountability Foundation previously filed a similar complaint. They noted that the seats at the event were between $35,000 and $50,000. Ocasio Cortez is known for being a poor-mouthing critic of her congressional salary, so it doesn’t seem likely that she paid for the tickets or purchased the dress with her own money. Did they come from where? Or was it possible that she used campaign funds to purchase them, which would be also illegal? There is no record of her requesting an exemption.
This issue is being pushed to the 118th Congress. That means Republicans will control this investigation and the ethics committee. This should mean that an exhaustive investigation will be conducted and that it won’t be forgotten.
Ocasio Cortez responded by denouncing any wrongdoing through her spokesperson and stating that she was confident that the matter would be resolved.
“The Congresswoman has always taken ethics incredibly seriously, refusing any donations from lobbyists, corporations, or other special interests,” says spokeswoman Lauren Hitt. “We are confident that this matter will be dismissed.”
— bryan metzger (@metzgov) December 7, 2022
We’ll have to wait and see what happens. There is something suspicious about Ocasio Cortez’s lifestyle. She lives like a celebrity and makes less than $200,000 per year. This could be a huge problem for Ocasio-Cortez. Please pass the popcorn.