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Source: AP Photo/Seth Wenig
The American Accountability Foundation, a conservative watchdog group, filed an ethics complaint against Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) for accepting free tickets to the Met Gala, where she wore a custom white gown that read, “tax the rich.”
The self-proclaimed socialist drew backlash on social media over her attendance Monday at the lavish ball, where tickets go for at least $30,000 and tables are priced at $275,000.
Ocasio-Cortez attempted to defend her attendance in a tweet by saying that “New York elected officials are routinely invited to and attend the Met due to our responsibilities in overseeing and supporting the city’s cultural institutions for the public. I was one of several in attendance in this evening.”
In their complaint , the AAF argues that the congresswoman violated House rules by accepting “an
impermissible gift,” referring to the tickets, and has called on the Office of Congressional Ethics to open an investigation into the matter.
“Without prompt investigation and enforcement of Congressional Rules, the American people are likely to lose faith in the ability of Congress to police its members,” the complaint reads.
The complaint further states that since Ocasio-Cortez said her attendance at the Met Gala was part of her official duties as an elected representative, the “receipt of the gift” must be categorized as a widely attended event or charity event, both of which are exemptions as outlined in the House rules.
However, the AAF alleges that the congresswoman’s invite does not fall under either exemption because the gala was not widely attended and because the invitations are curated by Condé Nast, a private company.
“[W]hile the individual’s invitations may bear the name of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum has ceded control over the invitations to a for-profit company, specifically Condé Nast, and to its Chief Content Officer, Anna Wintour,” the complaint reads.It also claimed that Instagram, which is owned by Facebook, “was able to purchase access to Representative Ocasio-Cortez that is unavailable to average citizens” by sponsoring a table at the event.The complaint did not mention any issues with the custom gown worn by Ocasio-Cortez.
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