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By Dartunorro Clark
Rep.-elect Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., ripped Fox News on Friday for mocking “working-class people” after the news channel did a segment on her struggle to rent an apartment in Washington, D.C.
“As I mentioned, we’ve been preparing and will be fine. However, it’s been very revealing to see how gleefully Fox News hosts crack jokes about working-class people. It reveals what they actually think about us,” she tweeted.
Ocasio-Cortez, 29, became the youngest woman ever elected to the House on Tuesday when she won her race in New York’s 14th congressional district of Queens and the Bronx. She was thrust into the national spotlight after she beat longtime Democratic Rep. Joe Crowley in an unexpected primary upset earlier this year.
She revealed to The New York Times on Thursday that she will not start receiving her salary until she assumes office in January. “I have three months without a salary before I’m a member of Congress. So, how do I get an apartment? Those little things are very real,” she told the paper.
Representatives are paid $174,000 annually.
During a Fox News panel Friday morning, the hosts and guests derided Ocasio-Cortez’s comments, suggesting it was a possible political ploy from the self-identified Democratic Socialist.
Fox News contributor Judy Miller called it “a brilliant political line” that will play well with her base, but also admitted that the cost of living in Washington, D.C., is expensive.
“I think what she’s talking about is all of the money in Washington, all of the wealth in Washington, all of the power and a little, simple person like her from New York can’t find a place to live,” Miller said.
Fox News correspondent Ed Henry slammed Ocasio-Cortez on the panel, suggesting that she could have been saving her money rather than embracing her newfound celebrity.
“Some of those (photo) shoots she had during the campaign, she had these multi-thousand dollar outfits that could pay a month’s rent in Washington, D.C.,” he said.
Ocasio-Cortez then slammed their remarks in several tweets.
“It is bizarre to see 1%-salaried anchors laugh at the US housing crisis,” she said. “There is no reason to be ashamed or embarrassed. Mocking lower incomes is exactly how those who benefit from + promote wealth inequality the most keep everyday people silent about 1 of the worst threats to American society: that the rich are getting richer and the poor, poorer.”
She also responded to Henry’s claim directly.
“Never purchased pricey clothes + always told my story. But repeating lies until they are believed is your thing,” she said.
After Ocasio-Cortez’s tweets went viral, chef José Andrés tweeted his support and offered to let the congresswoman stay with his family in Washington, D.C.
Andrés made headlines last year after he went to Puerto Rico to feed families after Hurricane Maria.
“Dear Congresswomen: you have a room, a shower, and a plate on my family table for as long as you may be in need of one,” he said.
Fox News had no immediate comment.