Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) called out Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s (R-Ky.) reelection campaign after a photo emerged of a group of young male supporters pretending to kiss and choke her a cardboard cutout of her.
In a tweet on Tuesday, the freshman congresswoman asked if McConnell’s campaign was “paying for young men to practice groping & choking members of Congress” or if it was “standard culture of #TeamMitch.”
“Hey @senatemajldr – these young men look like they work for you,” she tweeted. “Just wanted to clarify: are you paying for young men to practice groping & choking members of Congress w/ your payroll, or is this just the standard culture of #TeamMitch? Thanks.”
Hey @senatemajldr – these young men look like they work for you.
Just wanted to clarify: are you paying for young men to practice groping & choking members of Congress w/ your payroll, or is this just the standard culture of #TeamMitch?
— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) August 6, 2019
McConnell’s campaign claimed that the young men were not affiliated with it.
“These young men are not campaign staff, they’re high schoolers and it’s incredible that the national media has sought to once again paint a target on their backs rather than report real, and significant news in our country,” campaign manager Kevin Golden told the Post.
The photo shows seven young men, all of whom are wearing “Team Mitch” T-shirts, surrounding the cutout of Ocasio-Cortez.
One of the men can be seen kissing the cutout, while another has his hand near the neck of the cutout.
The same group of teens were seen in another photo shared by the McConnell campaign’s Instagram account, holding posters of Supreme Court Justices Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh.
Remember when Mitch cried for civility after his dinner got interrupted? https://t.co/9rdtkgEXAs
— Adam Parkhomenko (@AdamParkhomenko) August 5, 2019
The McConnell campaign had also been criticized on Monday for tweeting a display depicting a tombstone bearing the name of Amy McGrath, one of several Democrats vying to face him in the 2020 election.
It's symptomatic of what is wrong with our system. I'm fine with the ordinary rough and tumble of politics, but this strikes me as beyond the pale.
— Amy McGrath (@AmyMcGrathKY) August 5, 2019