Bronx girl or secretly middle class? Twitter fight erupts over Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez background
Ocasio-Cortez recently shook up New York politics by defeating 10-term incumbent Joe Crowley in the party’s congressional primary race. She used what she called her “working-class” background to garner support for her candidacy and convince voters that she understood their struggles. “I wake up every day and I’m a Puerto Rican girl from the Bronx. Every single day,” she told the New York Times’s in an interview.
On Sunday, conservative commentator John Cardillo posted a photograph of Ocasio-Cortez’s childhood home on Twitter, pointing out that she lived in a “very nice area” in an effort to show that she experienced an upbringing that was a “far cry” from the Bronx girl image that was cultivated during her campaign against Crowley.
This is the Yorktown Heights (very nice area) home @Ocasio2018 grew up in before going off to Ivy League Brown University.— John Cardillo (@johncardillo) July 1, 2018
A far cry from the Bronx hood upbringing she’s selling. pic.twitter.com/xyOtZzVJII
The 28-year-old Democratic Socialist was having none of it, however, and shot back at Cardillo, claiming that her mother “scrubbed toilets” so that she could live in a nice house. Ocasio-Cortez also pointed out that Cardillo got the name of her alma mater wrong in his tweet; she attended Boston University, not the Ivy League Brown University.
Hey John,— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@Ocasio2018) July 1, 2018
1. I didn’t go to Brown or the Ivy League. I went to BU. Try Google.
2. It is nice. Growing up, it was a good town for working people. My mom scrubbed toilets so I could live here & I grew up seeing how the zip code one is born in determines much of their opportunity.
3. Your attempt to strip me of my family, my story, my home, and my identity is exemplary of how scared you are of the power of all four of those things.— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@Ocasio2018) July 1, 2018
On Twitter, the reaction was mixed, with some supporting Cardillo and suggesting that Ocasio-Cortez had misled people by playing up her Bronx roots (her campaign bio states she went to school 40 minutes from the Bronx, where her father was a business-owner and many of her family members lived) while others criticized Cardillo for attempting to discredit the political newcomer and her socialist credentials.
Trump re-election campaign advisor Katrina Pierson tweeted that Democrats had been “duped” by identity politics. “They got a Westchester girl that campaigned as the Bronx,” she wrote. Others tweeted calling Ocasio-Cortez a “phony” and a “fraud”.
Identity politics duped the left. They got a Westchester girl that campaigned as the Bronx. lol She should be a great ally for School Choice. She did it.’It was clear to her that the zip code a child was born in determined much of their destiny’ #MAGA 🇺🇸 https://t.co/K9lEXE9oVA— Katrina Pierson (@KatrinaPierson) July 1, 2018
Phony phony phony -- she's from fucking Yorktown Heights, where I was brought up, NOT the Bronx. You couldn't get much whiter, or more privileged, than good ol' Yorktown: I never even *saw* a black/brown person until I got sent to "reform school." https://t.co/RqrS1SbP9G— Justin Raimondo (@JustinRaimondo) June 30, 2018
So Ocasio Cortez is the left’s new fav. Her family’s monied background and her name dropping of her lipstick shows she’s the worst kind of capitalist, believing in enriching herself while others wade through the sewers and sludges of socialism. Another fraud.— Mike Kennedy (@Skyhawk566) June 30, 2018
Some of Ocasio-Cortez’s supporters joked that they couldn’t possibly support her anymore after hearing the shocking news that she grew up in a house.
I was a big supporter of Ocasio-Cortez but after the latest revelation that she grew up in a house, I can no longer support her in good conscience https://t.co/Ssywkyuqyz— PeterNorway (@classiclib3ral) July 1, 2018
These damning hit pieces on Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez just keep coming: she had a co-worker who didn't like her, and she used to live in a house! https://t.co/pyDyUKfc5b— Ben Siemon (@BenjaminJS) July 2, 2018
Others posted images of huge houses and homes from movies and cartoons to poke fun at Cardillo’s original tweet showing socialist candidate’s childhood home, which was fairly modest in comparison.
This is the Yorktown Heights home (very nice neighborhood) that @Ocasio2018 grew up in before leaving to go to an Ivy League school.— Erik Ruiz (@ErikRuiz91) July 1, 2018
A far cry from the Bronx upbringing she's selling. pic.twitter.com/8moWf1kzD4
This is the home Lady Bird McPherson claimed she grew up in before going where culture is like, New York, or Connecticut or New Hampshire. A far cry from the Sacramento upbringing she’s selling. pic.twitter.com/nVEOaMg1Cm— Aly Semigran (@AlySemigran) July 2, 2018