She may seem to be so popular that even 2020 Democratic presidential candidates are following her socialist lead, however, not everything is going so well for New York’s Democratic freshman Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.
Someone on Twitter outed her on something suspicious going on in her office. And it involves her boyfriend, web developer Riley Roberts.
While you were having a nice Valentine's Day, @AOC decided to put her boyfriend on staff – drawing a salary on the taxpayer's dime. Nice to see her adapting to the swamp so quickly. pic.twitter.com/bvncwzxY53
— Luke Thompson (@ltthompso) February 15, 2019
Ocasio-Cortez was quick to respond. But perhaps she should have taken her own advice in regards to checking facts. Unless they got secretly married, Riley is not her spouse.
Actually this cal designation is a permission so he can have access to my Google Cal. Congressional spouses get Gcal access all the time.
Next time check your facts before you tweet nonsense.
— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) February 15, 2019
And the initial tweet about it wasn’t the only hit Ocasio-Cortez received on the matter. This little gem also showed up, which also put her response into question:
Just going to leave this here. From the Committee on House Administration's IT policy. pic.twitter.com/Kd75nF17pT
— Jordan Haverly (@jhaverly) February 15, 2019
“From time to time, at the request of members, spouses and partners are provided House email accounts for the purposes of viewing the member’s calendar,” the spokesperson for the Office of the Chief Administrative Officer, David O’Boyle told Fox News in a statement.
But that explanation didn’t sit well with Fox News contributor and former chairman of the House Oversight Committee Jason Chaffetz.
“It’s totally naïve and inappropriate — you wouldn’t allow it in most companies, let alone the House of Representatives. There should be real consequences,” Chaffetz said.
“When I was in the House, my scheduler would forward my wife my schedule once a week. But you’re not allowed unfettered access. And he isn’t even her spouse,” Chaffetz said. “It should be referred to the ethics committee for further investigation.”
Ocasio-Cortez’s chief of staff Saikat Chakrabarti backed up the boss’s claim, reported Fox News. Chakrabarti reiterated that it was just about calendar access, adding the term “partners” to the defense, but again the claim was refuted by a Twitter user:
That's a staff email address. There's not such thing as a "spouse" email address.
You are almost certainly running afoul of federal ethics laws by having that address.
Lazy chief of staffs need to learn to do their jobs. You MIGHT get away with it because they're not married pic.twitter.com/Ajuw6jtWjW
— Andrew Follett (@AndrewCFollett) February 15, 2019
However, not everyone may believe what Chakrabarti says on the matter, due to a Green New Deal claim getting walked back.
And that isn’t all of the trouble for Ocasio-Cortez. Another tweet highlighted an additional aspect of the problem, one which directly contradicts Chakrabarti’s claim:
Hey @AOC – A friend of mine who works in the House just sent me this screenshot of your staff directory from the internal congressional database.
Contrary to your denial, it lists your boyfriend as being on your staff. Care to explain why you appear to be lying? pic.twitter.com/My8ixAJyXC
— Andrew Surabian (@Surabees) February 15, 2019
Interestingly, prior to Ocasio-Cortez being elected, Roberts was frequently “mistaken as being nothing more than a campaign volunteer to Ocasio-Cortez, since he was photographed often with her on the campaign trail,” Heavy wrote.
It remains to be seen what, if anything, will be done to investigate the matter or implement consequences if there is an ethics violation.
If it was a Republican member of Congress who was involved in something like this, you can bet the Democrats would be all over calling for an investigation and more.
As it stands, any calls for such a thing from the right will likely be brushed aside as partisan politics.