A U.S. Army veteran and conservative political analyst accused Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) of taking a "veiled swipe" Wednesday at his testimony before Congress, after the democratic socialist lectured the hearing room that it is "impossible" for someone to pull themselves up by their bootstraps.
What are the details?
Iraq War veteran Rob Smith spoke as a witness for a hearing titled, "A Threat to America's Children: The Trump Administration's Proposed Changes to the Poverty Line Calculation."
Smith delivered powerful testimony discussing how he overcame poverty and criticized the notion that "more government" is the solution — crediting his success to growing up in America and praising President Donald Trump's policies.
At the end of the hearing, Rep. Ocasio-Cortez referred to the testimony of a witness called by Democrats before stating, "You know this idea of a bootstrap and this metaphor of a bootstrap started off as a joke? Because it's a physical impossibility to lift yourself up by a bootstrap, by your shoelaces."
"It's physically impossible," the congresswoman repeated. "The whole thing is a joke."
Smith shared a clip of the New York Democrat's comments on Twitter the next day, saying, "This is @AOC veiled swipe at my testimony of being a poor kid who lifted myself up via the Army, hard work, and the blessing of being born in the USA. They only want to hear from black victims, not victors."
Rep. Ocasio-Cortez defended her statements, first criticizing President Trump "and his friends" before tweeting, "I worked my butt off to get elected against all odds, without any special connections or money. I worked double shifts and wore through my shoes, outspent 10:1 to get elected. Even w/ all that hard work, it would be narcissistic to pretend I 'bootstrapped' it alone & w/o others."