Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez accomplished the impossible: In a year, she went from an overeducated and underpaid bartender to the youngest woman ever elected to Congress. Ms. Ocasio-Cortez overcame many obstacles on her rise to power, but now she must face her greatest challenge yet – a predicament even her BU degree in economics and international relations couldn’t prepare her for: rent.
By the close of the polls Tuesday, Nov. 6, the people of New York’s 14th district – or 78% of them, anyway – had spoken. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez would be their congresswoman. By Wednesday, Nov. 7, the supposed economic genius was asking how she could get an apartment in D.C. when she wouldn’t have a congressional salary until actually taking office.
“I have three months without a salary before I’m a member of Congress, so how do I get an apartment?” Ocasio-Cortez told The New York Times. “Those little things are very real.”
Of course, rather than adequately plan ahead, she did what any good socialist worth her weight in Venezuelan Bolívars (or about a buck-fifty American) would do – she blamed the system:
There are many little ways in which our electoral system isn’t even designed (nor prepared) for working-class people to lead.
This is one of them (don’t worry btw – we’re working it out!)
— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@Ocasio2018) November 8, 2018
Not a Wise Investment
This level of ignorance comes as no surprise, however, as the socialist darling of the progressive left has told some head scratchers before. Remember when she said that unemployment is low because everyone works two jobs, or when she claimed that the government would pay for all the free stuff she promises just as it pays for tax cuts – forgetting, apparently, that the taxpayers cover the government’s tab? Her education, it seems, was not a wise investment.
That the Boston University Alumna who graduated cum laude in 2011 with a bachelor’s in economics and international relations appears utterly oblivious to how the economy and the government works is frightening. With a tuition cost of over $50,000 a year and a U.S. News ranking of 43 out of 312 national universities, perhaps those eyeing a BU education should consider Ms. Ocasio-Cortez. Is a four-year degree at her school worth a quarter of a million dollars?
The Cost of Living
According to Expatistan.com, the overall cost of living in New York City is 11% higher than that of Washington D.C., with housing specifically being 21% higher. A quick search on Apartments.com shows 184 single-bedroom apartments available for under $1,100 a month in D.C. – with more options in nearby towns in Virginia and Maryland. What most folks consider affordable housing – especially in that area – is indeed available.
Things may be a bit tight until that $174,000 a year salary kicks in, but then she ought to be fine – assuming she knows how to budget. The Constitution does require members of Congress to live in the states they represent and paying rent in two costly cities can be intimidating. However, there are ways of cutting costs. Not only do some representatives room together and split the expense, as many as 100 simply sleep in their offices while about the business of Congress. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez overthrew a titan in the Democratic Party – while only spending $194,000 on campaign to Crowley’s $3.4 million – surely she can survive sleeping on a couch until her checks start coming in.
Is a four-year degree at her school worth a quarter of a million dollars?
But then, perhaps that’s the problem: She achieved her political miracles using other people’s money. That she seems to feel entitled to payment before she starts the job sums up the core of the socialist mindset: “I deserve what I want, whether I work for it or not.” If she can’t even handle her own finances, how do the more than 100,000 suckers who voted for her expect she’ll manage the nation?
So, how will Ms. Ocasio-Cortez make it? She will probably succeed in convincing her electorate to raise funds for her. If even half of them pitched in $10, she could buy a comfortable spot of her own in D.C. and have some left to blow. Well now, perhaps she’s smarter than we gave her credit for.