Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio Cortez, a New York Democrat, is now under investigation from the U.S. House Ethics Committee in a probe of suspected violations “of the House of the Code of Official Conduct or of a law, rule, regulation, or other standard of conduct applicable to the conduct of such Member” according to House Rule XI, clause 3(b)(8)(A).
The House Ethics Committee released a statement Wednesday that did little to describe the allegations against Ocasio Cortez.
“The Acting Chairwoman and Acting Ranking Member of the Committee on Ethics have jointly decided to extend the matter regarding Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, which was transmitted to the Committee by the Office of Congressional Ethics on June 23, 2022,” the statement said.
Adding, “The Committee notes that the mere fact of a referral or an extension, and the mandatory disclosure of such an extension and the name of the subject of the matter, does not itself indicate that any violation has occurred, or reflect any judgment on behalf of the Committee.”
However, The Daily Mail reported that several conservative groups petitioned the committee to investigate the New York Democrat following her attendance to the Met Gala at no cost, a value of $35,000, and her wear of a designer “Tax-the-Rich” dress at no charge.
Paul Kamenar of the National Legal and Policy Center wrote in one such complaint obtained by The Daily Caller News Foundation, “Representative Ocasio-Cortez may have violated the House Gift Rule by accepting free admission for herself and boyfriend to the Met Gala event and receiving related gifts before, during, or after the event, including the use of custom-designed dress, limousine service, the use of the Carlyle Hotel, professional hair and makeup services, and any other related services or goods.”
A second conservative group: the American Accountability Foundation, filed an additional complaint with the Ethics Committee on Tuesday according to The Daily Caller. It made the allegation that Ocasio-Cortez was prohibited by the ethics code from accepting the free tickets due to the fact that a for-profit company that lobbies Congress: Conde Nast, managed the invitations for the Met.
The committee concluded that it will announce its course of action after the upcoming organization meeting and the adoption of new Committee Rules in the 118th Congress.