New York Democrat Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is back in the headlines but certainly not for any reason she would want, as she's facing a scandal over her acceptance of tickets to the Met Gala from Vogue in 2021.
According to the Washington Examiner, the radical progressive lawmaker's staff was warned against taking the free tickets to the high-brow event by an anti-corruption lawyer.
The Examiner noted:
The lawyer warned that Vogue's parent company, Advance Media Publications, was a registered lobbyist and appeared to suggest that she could attend the gala if she had an invite from event organizers. Ocasio-Cortez and her boyfriend accepted the tickets to the gala.
The attorney who issued the warning made it crystal clear, according to documents obtained by the House Ethics Committee, that specific rules would need to be followed for AOC and her partner to accept tickets.
"The Congresswoman could accept an invitation from [the Met], but not from Vogue," the attorney wrote, according to the documents. "Since Advance Publications is a registered lobbyist, we'll need to be extra careful!"
AOC came under heavy fire at the time of her attendance, given the "Tax The Rich" dress she wore, the possibility that the table she sat at was a $300,000 table, and how she received the $35,000 tickets just to get in the door at the exclusive, elitist event.
.@AOC’s ‘Tax the Rich’ Met Gala appearance likely violated law: ethics panelhttps://t.co/GJlv3ppvLC
— Larry Elder (@larryelder) March 7, 2023
The Office of Congressional Ethics released a report on the various incidents surrounding her attendance, including a number of unpaid vendor bills for such necessities as hair and makeup, and living quarters.
"The Committee notes that the mere fact of conducting further review of a referral, and any mandatory disclosure of such further review, does not itself indicate that any violation has occurred, or reflect any judgment on behalf of the Committee," a statement from the Ethics Committee read.
The statement added: "In order to comply with Committee Rule 7 regarding confidentiality, out of fairness to all respondents, and to assure the integrity of its work, the Committee will refrain from making further public statements on this matter pending completion of its initial review."
Her office had previously denied the reports, especially the emerging reports of the numerous unpaid bills she allegedly left behind.
"While regrettable, these delayed payments definitively do not rise to the level of a violation of House Rules," an AOC spokesperson said.
Her office added: "Even after OCE’s exhaustive review of the congresswoman’s personal communications, there is no record of the congresswoman refusing to pay for these expenses."
AOC probably thought she wouldn't have to worry about any of this as long as Democrats stayed in power. Unfortunately for her, now that House Republicans are able to utilize their investigatory powers, she'll actually have to answer for this.