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AOC Embroiled in Congressional Ethics Controversy Over Her Marital Status - 5 Year Prison Sentence Broached

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Although the office of Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York said she is not married, that’s not the story told by her official filings.

A March 2023 filing lists fiance Riley Roberts as her spouse, as does a January 2023 form she filed.

An August financial disclosure filing lists that Ocasio-Cortez took a trip to Italy with her spouse. The filing said the trip took place in August 2022, and suggests from its wording that at that time she was married, because expenses for her spouse were discussed.

That’s more than just a personal question, because — as outlined by the Washington Free Beacon — spouses of members of Congress are required to disclose financial information, something Roberts has not done.

“They are not legally married,” Lauren Hitt, a representative of Ocasio-Cortez insisted. “House Ethics has commonly recognized the term spouse to extend to long-term partners.”

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However, the House Ethics rulebook defines spouse very precisely as “someone to whom you are legally married.”

Further, the House Ethics Committee said a fine of $50,000 or even a jail term of five years could be imposed on anyone who falsifies disclosure forms, although the Free Beacon noted that censure is a more likely penalty to be imposed.

The contradiction between the official forms and what her office says is reality could make Ocasio-Cortez the target of claims of hypocrisy, said Dylan Hedtler-Gaudette, senior government affairs manager at the Project on Government Oversight, according to the Free Beacon.

Hedtler-Gaudette said Ocasio-Cortez should “put her money where her mouth is” and make all required information available.

Should AOC explain herself?

“If Rep. Ocasio-Cortez is going to refer to Mr. Roberts as her spouse in the context of one kind of ethics disclosure, it would be logical and consistent for her to do so in the context of all ethics disclosures, including annual financial disclosures and periodic transaction reports,” Hedtler-Gaudette continued.

Marriage requires disclosure, noted Kendra Arnold, executive director of the Foundation for Accountability and Civic Trust.

“If they were married then she would be required to disclose his finances on her 2022 financial disclosure. There is no exception to this rule,” she said.

Ocasio-Cortez has been in ethical hot water before.

The House Office of Congressional Ethics found she likely violated ethics rules by attending the 2021 Met Gala.

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In a report dated June 17, 2022, the office said that there was “substantial reason to believe that she accepted impermissible gifts associated with her attendance at the Met Gala in 2021.”

In April, a complaint to the Federal Election Commission was filed by Dan Backer on behalf of the Coolidge Reagan Foundation. The complaint cites more than $9,600 in reported campaign credit card expenditures that lacked information on the purpose of the charges.

“This Complaint arises from Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s repeated, blatant violations of federal campaign finance law to conceal how she spent thousands of dollars of campaign funds,” the complaint said.

“On numerous occasions throughout 2022, Congresswoman Ocasio-Cortez’s authorized candidate committee, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez for Congress (“AOC for Congress”), reported tens of thousands of dollars of disbursements for card payments and card payment reimbursements to Congresswoman Ocasio-Cortez herself; American Express; and an entity called ‘Veyond!,’ which appears to have provided virtual reality services and apparently no longer operates under that name,” the complaint continued.

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Jack Davis is a freelance writer who joined The Western Journal in July 2015 and chronicled the campaign that saw President Donald Trump elected. Since then, he has written extensively for The Western Journal on the Trump administration as well as foreign policy and military issues.
Jack Davis is a freelance writer who joined The Western Journal in July 2015 and chronicled the campaign that saw President Donald Trump elected. Since then, he has written extensively for The Western Journal on the Trump administration as well as foreign policy and military issues.
Jack can be reached at jackwritings1@gmail.com.
Location
New York City
Languages Spoken
English
Topics of Expertise
Politics, Foreign Policy, Military & Defense Issues




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