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Ocasio-Cortez responds to a GOP congressional critic

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WASHINGTON – Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez responded Tuesday to criticism from a Republican congressman by saying he lied about her and asking for civility in their shared workplace of the House of Representatives. 

Ocasio-Cortez chided Rep. Jody Hice, R-Ga., writing on Twitter that Hice was “lying about this.”

“We’re going to see each other at work & you’re going to pretend to be nice to me. Passive aggression. It’s a lifestyle,” she continued, adding the thumbs-up emoji at the end of the tweet. 

Hice had accused her of having “deliberately misled the American people” about the treatment of migrants in detention. Ocasio-Cortez had previously said migrants in Border Patrol custody were held in substandard conditions and “forced to drink out of toilets.” Hice disagreed. 

In the first of two videos posted on Twitter on Monday, Hice drank out of one of the combined drinking fountains and toilets at the center of controversy.

“There’s drinkable water within this toilet system, AOC is giving fallacious information, here’s the truth,” Hice said, after drinking from it. 

In another video, Hice visited a warehouse he called a “miniature Walmart,” full of basic necessities like socks, toothbrushes, and clothing for detained migrants.

The disagreement stemmed from comments Ocasio-Cortez had made after a visit to a Border Patrol facility at the beginning of July. On July 1, after touring the facility, Ocasio-Cortez tweeted to say Border Patrol officers were telling detained migrant women  “to drink out of the toilets,” sparking a social media firestorm.  

More: Illinois GOP group apologizes for offensive ‘Jihad Squad’ post about AOC, Omar, Tlaib and Pressley

More: AOC to DHS chief: Border agents shared ‘Photoshopped images of my violent rape’ in secret Facebook group

More: Chilling first-hand reports of migrant detention centers highlight smell of ‘urine, feces,’ overcrowded conditions

Twitter users noted that Ocasio-Cortez was likely referring to a kind of combined drinking fountain, sink, and toilet. A day later, Ocasio-Cortez tweeted a picture of the toilet to explain that the sink portion of the toilet wasn’t working on the day when she and other members of Congress toured the Border Patrol facility.

More: Lawmaker describes ‘unacceptable’ border detention conditions, meets with US citizen in Border Patrol custody

The federal government’s treatment of detained migrants at the U.S.-Mexico border has drawn increased scrutiny after a Department of Homeland Security inspector general report called conditions in detention facilities in the Rio Grande Valley a “ticking time bomb.” Ocasio-Cortez’s group was one of several congressional delegations to visit border detention facilities in an effort to draw attention to poor conditions for detained migrants. 

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez responds to Rep. Jody Hice’s comments



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