Shortly after Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) shared harrowing details Monday about her experiences during the Capitol riot, California Rep. Katie Porter (D) described how they braved the hours-long ordeal together.
Porter told MSNBC’s Lawrence O’Donnell that Ocasio-Cortez asked to be let into her office during the Jan. 6 insurrection and immediately began opening doors and searching for a place to hide.
“The thing that will always stay with me was when I was saying ’Well, don’t worry, I’m a mom, I’m calm, I’ve got everything here we need, we could live for like a month in this office,” Porter said. “And [Ocasio-Cortez] said ‘I just hope I get to be a mom. I hope I don’t die today.’”
Porter also recalled that Ocasio-Cortez was wearing heels that day while she was wearing flats.
“I remember her saying to me, ‘I knew I shouldn’t have worn heels. How am I going to run?’” Porter said. ”And we went and we found her a pair of sneakers to wear from one of my staffers. So that she could run if she needed to literally run for her life.”
Ocasio-Cortez, an influential progressive who has repeatedly been the target of attacks from Republicans and President Donald Trump, went live on Instagram Monday to share the terrifying experience she had during the siege led by pro-Trump insurrectionists at her workplace.
Ocasio-Cortez described hiding behind a door in the bathroom of her office as she heard a man yell “Where is she? Where is she?” from outside her office. The man turned out to be a Capitol Police officer who had not identified himself. Ocasio-Cortez said both she and her legislative director had trouble interpreting if the officer was hostile or there to help.
Ocasio-Cortez and her staffer ran to a separate area, where they could hear the intruders shouting and banging on doors, trying to break in. It was then that she found Porter’s office and asked to take shelter.
Porter said she and Ocasio-Cortez spent about six hours hiding in the office.
“No one came to check on us,” Porter said. “We heard voices in the hallway, we didn’t know what they were, whether those were police officers, whether those were intruders, and so we just stayed dark, we shut the curtains, we turned our phones off, we silenced everything and we just sat as still and as quiet as we could be in the hope that they would just run on by.”
Porter said Ocasio-Cortez chose her office because people fleeing from the Cannon House Office Building were not given directions on where to go after they had been evacuated. She also provided shelter for another person, the chief of staff of a friend, she said.
The attack on the Capitol led to the deaths of five people, including a Capitol Police officer. Trump was impeached for a second time a week later for allegedly inciting the mob that stormed the building in an effort to stop the certification of President Joe Biden’s Electoral College votes.