Ocasio-Cortez misquotes Constitution; may have violated ethics rules over Trump Jr. meme

by WorldTribune Staff, December 9, 2018

The outspoken Rep.-elect Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has not yet taken office but has already misquoted the U.S. Constitution while joking about a potential presidential run.

A photographer at a photo shoot at Harvard University joked with the 29-year-old New York Democrat that “You can’t even run for president for another six years,” according to Politico’s Playbook.

Rep.-elect Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. / Reuters

Ocasio-Cortez responded that the Constitution only places a presidential age limit on men and then said she would run for president if Republicans don’t pass the Equal Rights Amendment.

“No, not for a long time. Thank God,” Ocasio-Cortez said. “Although we’ve been joking that because the Equal Rights Amendment hasn’t been passed yet, the Constitution technically says he cannot run unless he’s 35. … So what we’ll do is we’ll force the Republican Party to pass the Equal Rights Amendment by threatening to run for president.”

“That is awesome,” the photographer reportedly replied. “All the people who say a literal interpretation of the Constitution is the only thing you should be paying attention to.”

“I will keep vigilance,” Ocasio-Cortez promised.

The Constitution does not say “he” cannot run – it says “any person.”

Article II Section I, reads as follows:

No person except a natural born citizen, or a citizen of the United States, at the time of the adoption of this Constitution, shall be eligible to the office of President; neither shall any person be eligible to that office who shall not have attained to the age of thirty five years, and been fourteen Years a resident within the United States.

Meanwhile, reports are saying that Ocasio-Cortez may have committed an ethics violation before even being sworn into office.

Donald Trump Jr. shared a meme on Instagram with photos of Ocasio-Cortez and President Donald Trump.

The Ocasio-Cortez photo was captioned: “Why are you so afraid of a socialist economy?”

The caption for President Trump’s photo read: “Because Americans want to walk their dogs, not eat them.”

Ocasio-Cortez responded by tweeting: “I have noticed that Junior here has a habit of posting nonsense about me whenever the Mueller investigation heats up. Please, keep it coming Jr – it’s definitely a “very, very large brain” idea to troll a member of a body that will have subpoena power in a month.”

The Federalist co-founder Sean Davis, among others, said that threatening Trump Jr. likely violates House ethics. “Are you threatening to use your power as a federal official to subpoena anyone who mocks or otherwise disagrees with you on the Internet? It’s worth noting that the official House Ethics Manual explicitly prohibits the kind of threat that @Ocasio2018 just issued against @DonaldJTrumpJr for his refusal to support her political agenda.”

House rules state that “Members…are not to take or withhold any official action on the basis of the campaign contributions or support of the involved individuals, or their partisan affiliation. Members…are likewise prohibited from threatening punitive action on the basis of such considerations.”

Conservative commentator Candace Owens tweeted: “I just want to be clear: Did a member-elect of Congress just threaten a private citizen with a subpoena over a meme? There is no way in hell that this can be legal. Is @Ocasio2018 emotionally stable enough for Congress?”

After the backlash continued to build, Ocasio-Cortez attempted to clarify, tweeting: “For the GOP crying that this is a “threat” – I don’t have power to subpoena anybody. Congress as a body, GOP included, has the power. No indiv. member can issue a subpoena unless they are a Chair (which, as a freshman, I can assure you I will not be). Also must be under purview.”

The congresswoman-elect also came under fire for a recent tweet in which she claimed: “$21 TRILLION of Pentagon financial transactions “could not be traced, documented, or explained.” $21T in Pentagon accounting errors. Medicare for All costs ~$32T. That means 66% of Medicare for All could have been funded already by the Pentagon. And that’s before our premiums.”

It was quickly noted that Ocasio-Cortez’s point was rooted in a story from The Nation which attempts to track the Pentagon’s various accounting maneuvers, gimmicks, and tricks.

“Ocasio-Cortez, who either didn’t read the piece or lacks basic reading comprehension skills, gives her followers the distinct impression that by merely recouping $21 trillion in military accounting errors, the U.S. government could fund two-thirds of “Medicare for All,” i.e., single payer healthcare (reminders: existing Medicare is going insolvent, and the realistic ten-year price tag for single payer is closer to $40 Trillion).  This represents a distortion so ludicrous that it can be comprehensively debunked from multiple angles,” TownHall.com noted.

The entire Pentagon budget from 1789-2018 has totaled $18 trillion.

“Not only has the military not misspent (or even budgeted) $21 Trillion, the article AOC is touting doesn’t remotely claim that dubious accounting methods have led to massive hidden spending. The Pentagon’s questionable math has netted out as an approximate wash when it comes to actual dollars spent,” TownHall noted.

TownHall continued: “In some ways, AOC’s wildly inaccurate tweet is a gift to those of us who are desperate to demonstrate that single-payer healthcare is extraordinarily unaffordable. She has accidentally illustrated the scope of its total cost, while helpfully allowing us to place military spending (a chronically-inflated, evergreen target for liberals seeking pay-fors) in proper context.”

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