AOC responds to allegedly being called 'f***ing bitch' on Capitol Hill by Republican lawmaker Ted Yoho

While the congresswoman didn't directly hear the alleged slur, she said it was the first time a colleague approached her 'so aggressively'


Justin Vallejo
New York
,Griffin Connolly
Tuesday 21 July 2020 18:55 BST
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez says NYC crime spike partly caused by parents shoplifting food for their hungry families

Republican congressman Ted Yoho has been accused of calling Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez a "f***ing bitch" after a heated exchange on the steps of the US Capitol.

Quoting a reporter who overheard the exchange, The Hill said Mr Yoho made the comment after an interaction over the rise of violent crime in New York.

Ms Ocasio-Cortez recently claimed that a rise in gun violence, which includes a spike in the number of people critically injured and killed, was the result of people in a position to either "shoplift some bread or go hungry that night".

Mr Yoho allegedly said she was "disgusting" for making the claim and told her, "You are out of your freaking mind".

After the progressive Democrat responded that he was "rude" and the pair parted ways in opposite directions, Mr Yoho reportedly said out loud "f***ing bitch" a few steps away.

In a response on Tuesday, Ms Ocasio-Cortez tweeted that she had never spoken to Mr Yoho before he accosted her on the steps of the nation's Capitol building.

Mr Yoho, did not immediately respond to The Independent's request for comment. Speaking to The Hill, Mr Yoho said "no comment" while a spokesperson for Congressman Roger Williams, who was near by during the exchange, said he did not hear what was said in the conversation.

"Any comments overheard or attributed to Congressman Williams were part of a separate conversation that he and Congressman Yoho were having," the spokesperson said. "Congressman Williams would have immediately condemned that type of language towards any colleague."

Ms Ocasio-Cortez later claimed that Mr Williams was lying and joined in with Mr Yoho in the exchange.

House Majority leader Steny Hoyer told reporters that the confrontation was despicable conduct that needs to be sanctioned.

"It was the act of a bully, the act of a person who is the antithesis of John Lewis, who we honour every day this week," Mr Hoyer said of the 17th-term congressman and veteran civil rights leader from Georgia who died last week.

"Mr Yoho owes not only the congresswoman an apology but also an apology on the floor of the House of Representatives ... We need to pursue this kind of conduct and make it very clear it is unacceptable."

Colleagues including Matt Gaetz came to Ms Ocasio-Cortez's defence, confirming that she is, in fact, "not a bitch".

While Ms Ocasio-Cortez didn't hear Mr Yoho's alleged slur, she said it was the first time she had been challenged so aggressively by another lawmaker.

"That kind of confrontation hasn't ever happened to me – ever," she told The Hill. "I've never had that kind of abrupt, disgusting kind of disrespect levied at me."

Her comments during a virtual town hall on New York's rising gun violence and street crime have been the focus of criticism against the representative for parts of the Bronx and Queens.

She has been accused of making excuses for violent crime after asking if the increase was linked to record unemployment.

"Maybe this has to do with the fact that people aren't paying their rent and are scared to pay their rent. And so they go out and they need to feed their child and they don't have money. So, you maybe have to – they're put in a position where they feel like they either need to shoplift some bread or go hungry that night," she said during the town hall.

Her sentiments have been echoed by colleagues like Dean Phillips, who agrees with the assessment.

"Wonder why Rep. Yoho hasn't accosted me on the Capitol steps with the same sentiment?" he said in a tweet.

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