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Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) criticized Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell on Monday night after a photo circulated of young men wearing “Team Mitch” shirts posing in front of a cardboard cut out of her in a way that looks like one of them is choking her.
The photo, which went viral on Monday, shows a group of seven young men wearing white “Team Mitch” shirts. Several of them are pointing their thumbs down, while one grabs the cardboard cutout’s waist and poses like he’s trying to kiss it. Another one posed with his hand close to the cutout’s throat.
The post, which was on Instagram, was captioned: “break me off a piece of that.” The image appears to have been taken at a McConnell reelection event at the Fancy Farm Picnic in Kentucky, according to Business Insider.
“Hey @senatemajldr – these young men look like they work for you,” Ocasio-Cortez tweeted on Monday night. “Just wanted to clarify: are you paying for young men to practice groping & choking members of Congress w/ your payroll, or is this just the standard culture of #TeamMitch? Thanks.”
Hey @senatemajldr - these young men look like they work for you.— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) August 6, 2019
Just wanted to clarify: are you paying for young men to practice groping & choking members of Congress w/ your payroll, or is this just the standard culture of #TeamMitch?
A spokesperson for McConnell’s campaign told the Washington Post the young men in the photo did not have an official affiliation with them and that it “in no way condones” the image.
Ocasio-Cortez also criticized McConnell in a tweet earlier in the day for not calling for a vote in the Senate on a gun reform bill passed by the House in February in the wake of shootings in Dayton, Ohio, and El Paso, Texas.
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Andrew Wyrich is a politics staff writer for the Daily Dot, covering the intersection of politics and the internet. Andrew has written for USA Today, NorthJersey.com, and other newspapers and websites. His work has been recognized by the Society of the Silurians, Investigative Reporters & Editors (IRE), and the Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ).