Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York recently joined the controversial video-sharing app TikTok to advocate for it as many of her colleagues in Congress discuss banning it from the country.
But TikTok’s Beijing-owned parent company ByteDance Inc. recently donated a sizable sum to the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute, of which Ocasio-Cortez is an advisory council member.
That fact alone is enough to question her motives for fighting for the app.
ByteDance has admitted to spying on U.S. journalists, and some lawmakers have made the case the app is merely spyware masquerading itself as a fun way for people to connect with others.
In its U.S. form, TikTok is actually banned in its home country of China, which is a huge red flag.
Ocasio-Cortez is relatively young and is very active on social media. Instagram appears to be her favorite poison.
But she never showed any outward interest in TikTok until last week, when she made an account and posted a video in which she shamelessly shilled for the platform.
Ocasio-Cortez asked, “Do I believe TikTok should be banned?
She answered her own question with an emphatic “No.”
“The United States has never before banned a social media company from existence, from operating in our borders,” Ocasio-Cortez said. “And this is an app that has over 150 million Americans on it.”
Jake Denton with the Heritage Foundation shared the lawmaker’s video on Twitter and commented on the “coincidence” between ByteDance’s cash donation, which Ocasio-Cortez arguably stands to benefit from in some capacity.
In the three days since Ocasio-Cortez’s TikTok was posted, the congresswoman has posted no other clips and has had no other visible activity on the platform, which is peculiar.
The situation grows more difficult to understand when you connect her affiliation with the CHCI, to which ByteDance gifted $150,000 to last December.
Fox News reported the company gave equal amounts each to the CHCI and the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation.
The timing is suspicious, which leads to obvious questions as to whether Ocasio-Cortez has completely sold out.
The congresswoman is a radical leftist in her third term, but until recently, no one could argue she was not genuine in her beliefs. She has always appeared to believe in every insane idea she has ever proposed.
But she paraded around the MET Gala in an expensive dress that ironically said “Tax the Rich” two years ago. The House ethics panel is now probing whether she accepted “impermissible gifts” by allegedly allowing wealthy people to bankroll the stunt.
Nothing says “I am a common New Yorker” like appearing at an exclusive event regularly attended by the elites in the media, entertainment and government.
Representatives for Ocasio-Cortez have maintained on her behalf that she did nothing wrong.
But the optics are terrible.
An objective observer could make a compelling case the congresswoman is no longer just a former bartender whose dream of serving ordinary people was achieved.
In fact, one could argue Ocasio-Cortez looks very much like a woman whose behavior and opinions are influenced by money.
Her lone appearance on TikTok should elicit mountains of questions from those who elected her to go to Washington to carry the banner of so-called “democratic” socialism.
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.