Flagged by Facebook in its efforts to combat the online spread of disinformation, posts shared in early March 2021 claim that that financial disclosures show that Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a Democrat from New York serving since Jan 3, 2019, has a net worth of over $1 million. According to her latest annual financial disclosure reports, which cover the two years before she was elected and her first year in office, the congresswoman, popularly known as AOC, was nowhere close to being a millionaire.
One post, which reads “2 years ago AOC was broke when elected.. this yrs financials show she is now worth over 1 million net worth. How does that happen???,” had received over 14,000 shares at the time of this article’s publication (here). Other posts making this claim can be found here and here .
As stated here in a 2018 report by the Congressional Research Service, members of Congress, excluding the Speaker of the House and the Majority and Minority Leaders, earn $174,000 a year. Elected in the 2018 mid-term elections, Ocasio-Cortez has served as a representative for New York’s 14th District since Jan. 3, 2019 (here). The congresswoman has therefore earned this salary, minus annual income tax, for two years.
Filed by Ocasio-Cortez with the House Clerk’s Office on May 15, 2019, the congresswoman’s financial disclosure report for 2017-2018, is available here .
At the time of the filing, her assets included between $1,001 and $15,000 in a checking account, between $1,001 and $15,000 in a brokerage account, and between $1,001 and $15,000 invested in a 401K plan. In terms of earned income, the report discloses that she had earned $3,588 in wages the previous year from the New York City restaurant where she worked as a server (here). She also earned $21,875 from her 2018 congressional campaign.
As for liabilities, the House member has openly stated that she is still paying off debts from student loans (here). According to the report, she owes the U.S. Department of Education between $15,001 and $50,000 in federal student loan debt, which she incurred between 2007 and 2001 as an undergraduate student at Boston University (here).
The office of Ocasio-Cortez additionally provided Reuters with the congresswoman’s 2019 financial disclosure report, filed in September 2020. Her assets included between $1,001 and $15,000 in a checking account, between $1 and 1,000 in a brokerage account, and between $1,001 and $15,000 in her 401K plan.
Again, she disclosed that she owed between $15,001 and $50,000 in student loan debts in 2019.
As 2019 was her first year as a member of Congress, Ocasio-Cortez was not earning income as a server or from her campaign. She did, however, disclose the gift of an $829.18 swearing-in dinner, held on Jan. 2, 2019, the day before she was sworn into Congress.
When asked about the claims in these posts, the spokesperson who sent Reuters the 2019 report declined to provide further comment.
Fox News looked into the subject of her earnings in February 2020, reaching similar findings (here).
False. Financial disclosures do not show that Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is a millionaire.
This article was produced by the Reuters Fact Check team. Read more about our work to fact-check social media posts here .
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