Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez: Congresswoman attacked for dancing

By Chris Bell BBC News0

4 January 2019

 BBC Trending

  • Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez dancing as a student
    The video of Ms Ocasio-Cortez dancing has more than eight million views on Twitter


    In the eyes of some social media critics the United States’ youngest-ever congresswoman can do no right.

    To a lengthy list of past misdemeanours, including her clothes and not being rich , can now be added the grievous crime of dancing while in college.

    A day before Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez was officially sworn-in , near decade-old footage of the congresswoman dancing as a student at Boston University re-emerged on Twitter, apparently in an effort to embarrass her.

    It has since been viewed more than 8 million times.

    TWITTER@realdanjordan tweeted: "High School video of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez -- Congratulations New York!Presentational white space“Here is America’s favourite commie know-it-all acting like the clueless nitwit she is,” one right-wing Twitter account, @AnonymousQ1776, wrote as they shared the clip. The account, which appears to reference thebizarre QAnon conspiracy theory , has since been removed.
  • “After Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is forced out of office after one term she can go dance on a stage that has a pole,” said another.

    But the criticism prompted a much larger wave of support for the congresswoman online.

    “[Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez] is officially done,” comedian Patton Oswalt joked .

    “She’ll never recover from the world seeing her dancing adorably and having fun with her friends.”

    “I want Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez to give me dance lessons,” Star Trek actor George Takei tweeted , while actor Russell Crowe declared her “fantastic” .

    The video of Ms Ocasio-Cortez was compiled from a longer video featuring Boston University students. The video was posted to YouTube in 2010, when Ms Ocasio-Cortez was an undergraduate.

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The video was part of a meme circulating at the time.

Participants, including Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and other students at Boston University, emulated the dance from 1980s movie The Breakfast Club in a mash-up featuring the song Lisztomania, by French indie band Phoenix.

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Since beating veteran Democrat Joe Crowley in a New York congressional primary in July 2018 , Ms Ocasio-Cortez has been subject to unusually intense scrutiny from some conservative critics, particularly online.

Ms Ocasio-Cortez has spoken of her financial struggles, and many of those conservative critics seek to portray her concerns as disingenuous.

In November a Washington Examiner journalist was criticised for a “sexist” tweet, subsequently deleted, in which he posted a picture of Ms Ocasio-Cortez from behind.

“I’ll tell you something: that jacket and coat don’t look like a girl who struggles,” he wrote.

Fox and Friends host Katie Pavlich said Ms Ocasio-Cortez represented “hypocrisy at its best” and had “expensive tastes for a socialist” after she wore expensive clothes, which she did not keep, for a magazine photo shoot.

More recently, right-wing political website the Gateway Pundit has published images from Ms Ocasio-Cortez’s high school yearbook in an effort to portray her as part of a wealthy elite.

However, the congresswoman had less than $7,000 (£5,500) in savings, her director of communications told CNBC in November .

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