POLITICS

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Explains 'Dark Money' Reason Lawmakers Need Pay Raise

The New York Democrat admitted "it’s not a fun or politically popular position to take."

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) acknowledged Tuesday that her support of a pay raise for members of Congress is “not a fun or politically popular position to take.”

But the freshman lawmaker explained in a thread on Twitter why she believed the idea of curbing pay increases for politicians “may sound nice,” but it “only increases pressure on them to keep dark money loopholes open.”

It also “makes campaign finance reform harder,” punishes members “who rely on a straight salary” and rewards those “who rely on money loopholes and other forms of self-dealing,” she argued.

Check out the thread here:

Ocasio-Cortez’s comments came in response to a report that House Democrats had nixed part of an upcoming federal spending bill that would have reinstated the annual cost-of-living increase for lawmakers that was frozen when the economic crisis hit in 2009.

Pay has been  $174,000 per year for rank-and-file senators and representatives for the last decade. Democratic leaders acted over fears among lawmakers on both sides of the aisle of a backlash from voters in swing districts, reports The Washington Post.

Ocazio-Cortez has, since her victory in the 2018 midterms, repeatedly used her Twitter account to spotlight on what happens in Congress. She has highlighted how lobbyists manipulate policymakers, for example.

She and Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) are currently considering working together on a bill that would prohibit former members of Congress from becoming lobbyists.

And in February, a video of her exposing the flaws in campaign finance laws via a hypothetical game in which she played a “bad guy” who wanted to “get away with as much bad things as possible” to “enrich myself and advance my interests” went viral: 

Check out the video here:

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