The "controversy" this time revolved around borrowed clothes the congresswoman wore for a photoshoot.

By Kimberly Truong
Oct 29, 2020 @ 3:57 pm

On Wednesday, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez was revealed as the cover star of Vanity Fair's December issue, in a wide-ranging profile discussing her career, her first year in Congress and the severe threats she's received since rising to prominence and serving her first term.

Just a day later, however, the conversation among conservative outlets like Fox News and New York Post zeroed in on one thing: her appearance. Both Fox and the Post seized on the total cost of the outfits she borrowed to wear on the magazine's photoshoot — $14,000 — with Fox not-so-subtly adding that Ocasio-Cortez wore the loaned clothes while "attacking President Trump for not paying his taxes." Daily Mail reported that Ocasio-Cortez was allowed to keep one item from the shoot, a $2,850 fringed suit from Loewe.

The attempted dunk on the congresswoman was presumably an implication that it is somehow hypocritical for a Democratic Socialist to wear expensive clothes loaned to her for a photoshoot, the way everyone who has ever taken part in a magazine photoshoot has done.

On Thursday, Fox host Laura Ingraham tweeted the Fox story, regurgitating the headline: "AOC appears in Vanity Fair in outfits worth $14,000 to curse out Trump." Ocasio-Cortez responded, "100% worth it, would do again," adding, "(& I don’t know if you’ve been in a photoshoot Laura, but you don’t keep the clothes.)"

"The whole 'she wore clothes in a magazine, let’s pretend they’re hers' gimmick is the classic Republican strategy of 'let’s willfully act stupid, and if the public doesn’t take our performative stupidity seriously then we’ll claim bias,'" she continued. "GOP, get yourselves together. It’s sad."

The congresswoman also took the opportunity to offer some sound advice: "Republicans are Very Mad (again) about my appearance. This time they’re mad that I look good in borrowed clothes (again). Listen, if Republicans want pointers on looking your best, I’m happy to share. Tip #1: Drink water and don’t be racist."

You heard her. (And should you want more skincare and makeup advice, she has you covered.)

In the Vanity Fair piece, Ocasio-Cortez said that dressing for her job remains fraught.

"It’s legitimately hard being a first-generation woman…and being working class, trying to navigate a professional environment," she said. "It continues to take me so long to try to figure out how to look put-together without having a huge designer closet."