New York congressional candidate Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has been making a reputation for herself this election cycle, but it hasn’t always been for the best reasons. At times, she has been cited for weighing in on issues she didn’t have a firm grasp on, for spouting ideologies she couldn’t defend, and quite often for demanding change to numerous government programs, but not having a plan to do it, as was reported at the Inquisitr.
This time she is taking heat over her comments about “unregulated” ride-share services, particularly Uber, while using the service extensively herself. Reason reported that Ocasio-Cortez retweeted an old post from Noam Scheiber who was reporting on the fourth NYC cabbie to take his life over loss of income that was laid at the feet of Uber and Lyft. Scheiber stated that the city government was to blame and that their “anti-regulation zealotry came at the expense of professional drivers.”
Ocasio-Cortez added on that she was all for overhauling the system and making drivers be designated as employees and not independent contractors. It all sounded good until it was reported that as a major user of those services, she is personally a part of the problem. Despite going on the record numerous times stating that if drivers aren’t making at least $15 per hour that they are being exploited, she uses the services extensively.
NYC's fourth driver suicide. Yellow cab drivers are in financial ruin due to the unregulated expansion of Uber. What was a living wage job now pays under minimum.— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@Ocasio2018) March 21, 2018
- to call Uber drivers what they are: EMPLOYEES, not contractors
- Fed jobs guarantee
- Prep for automation https://t.co/FjfapJV2ni
It didn’t take long for Fox News to be the first to jump on her tweet, and start digging into her records to see just how far her solidarity with NYC cabbies goes. As it turned out, after examining her Federal Election Commission (FEC) filings, it didn’t go too far. Her latest FEC filings show that her campaign spent $4,000 on 160 Uber rides, and another $2,500 on rides from a similar service called Juno. There is no data for car service usage from July and August yet, but the press is having a field day with her for using the ride-share services she is vilifying all over social media and the campaign stump.
Uber has taken in $12 billion in investment and had revenues of $1.7 billion in Q4 of 2016.— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@Ocasio2018) March 2, 2018
Yet their drivers only take home $3.37 an hour.
Does that sound right to you?
We must update our laws to stand up for workers in an increasingly exploitative tech-based economy. https://t.co/uhEjePLxgK
Reason reported that her actions are like those of her political mentor Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vt), who also railed against ride share services and claimed to be fighting for cabbies, but who used Uber almost exclusively according to Watchdog. Fox News reports that they reached out to Ocasio-Cortez for a comment and to find out if she would consider stopping using Uber and Juno and switch to yellow cabs, but neither she nor anyone with her campaign returned their queries.