NY Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Under Investigation by House Ethics Committee
Conservative groups previously filed a complaint about Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s attendance at the Met Gala Costume event in September 2021. They called the free tickets an “impermissible gift.”
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) is under investigation by the House Ethics Committee, the congressional body announced on Wednesday.
released by acting Chairwoman Susan Wild (D-PA) and acting Ranking Member Michael Guest (R-MS) announced an extension of the inquiry but did not provide any details on what the investigation is related to.
“The Acting Chairwoman and Acting Ranking Member of the Committee on Ethics have jointly decided to extend the matter regarding Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez,” the statement reads.
It also notes that the complaint was assigned to the committee by the Office of Congressional Ethics on June 23, 2022.
The statement notes that the announcement of the inquiry and its extension was required by House and Committee rules, and did not indicate there was a violation. It says the issue will be taken up by the next Congress sometime in 2023. The House for the 118th Congress will be controlled by Republicans.
House Rule XI clause 3 and Committee Rule 17A were cited as the reason for the statement. Those rules govern when ethics complaints and investigations must be divulged to the public.
The subsection cited in House Rule XI clause 3 requires the committee publicly release any findings after 45 calendar days unless the committee chair and ranking minority member vote to extend it for an additional 45 days. In addition, the subsection cited in Committee Rule 17A states that the committee can delay reporting requirements if the release would come within 60 days of an election where the subject of the report is a candidate. Ocasio-Cortez and every House representative were up for reelection on November 8, 2022.
The timeline seems to indicate that the committee’s disclosures were delayed by one 45-day period and then delayed again until after the election.
A spokesperson for Ocasio-Cortez told Forbes that the representative is confident the charges will be dismissed. “The Congresswoman has always taken ethics incredibly seriously, refusing any donations from lobbyists, corporations or other special interests,” the spokesperson said.
Ocasio-Cortez had at least two ethics complaints filed against her relating to her appearance at the Met Gala. Conservative groups and ethics watchdogs complained that tickets were an “impermissible gift.” It is unclear if that complaint is related to this investigation. The complaints were filed in September 2021, but this inquiry relates to a matter transmitted to the committee from the Office Board on June 23, 2022.
17 September 2021, 18:41 GMT
It is possible it took several months for the board to gather and present its evidence to the committee, or that another complaint came in relating to the same issue. It is also possible the inquiry is about an entirely different issue.