Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has slammed “disgusting” claims that she “exaggerated her near-death” during the Capitol riots last month.
The Democrat Congresswoman slammed Republican colleague Nancy Mace as “cynical” on Thursday after she claimed AOC wasn’t in the building when it was stormed by a mob on January 6.
On Thursday, Ms Mace joined other critics who accused Ms Ocasio-Cortez of lying, tweeting, “I’m two doors down from @AOC and no insurrectionists stormed our hallway …”
And in response, Ms Ocasio-Cortez said Ms Mace also feared for her life as she was trapped in her office during the insurrection.
“This is a deeply cynical & disgusting attack, @NancyMace,” the Democrat replied.
“As the Capitol complex was stormed and people were being killed, none of us knew in the moment what areas were compromised. You previously told reporters yourself that you barricaded in your office, afraid you’d be hurt.”
It’s the latest defence from the politician, who earlier this week accused Republican critics of “manipulating” the truth as cruel hashtags began trending.
The hashtag #AlexandriaOcasioSmollet trended, a comparison to actor Jussie Smollett, who claimed to be the victim of a hate crime.
Smollett is currently facing charges after allegedly staging an assault in January 2019.
Writing on Twitter, Ms Ocasio-Cortez said her opponents were “manipulating the fact that most people don’t know the layout (of) the Capitol complex”.
“We were all on the Capitol complex – the attack wasn’t just on the dome,” she said.
“The bombs Trump supporters planted surrounded our offices too.”
Following the riots, pipe bombs were found near the Democratic and Republican national committee buildings, both a few hundreds metres from the Capitol complex.
“People were trying to rush and infiltrate our office buildings – that’s why we had to get evacuated in the first place,” Ms Ocasio-Cortez continued.
“The attempts of attackers and publicly available communications show how they tried to gain access and share location info on finding members for physical harm.”
A number of prominent Republican figures and media outlets had accused Ms Ocasio-Cortez of lying about the level of danger she faced during the riots because her office is in the Cannon building.
The Cannon building is separate from the Capitol, though is part of the Capitol complex and can be reached from the Capitol via an underground tunnel.
Following the claims, further hashtags – including #AOClied and #AOCSmollett – began trending on Twitter.
Commentator Candace Owens, a prominent supporter of Donald Trump, also took to Twitter to accuse Ms Ocasio-Cortez of “faking her own attempted murder”.
Speaking as part of a livestream on Monday, Ms Ocasio-Cortez gave her account of what happened to her during the riots.
She described a man banging on the door of her office and shouting, “Where is she?”
“I just thought to myself that they got inside,” she said.
“I really just felt like, if this is the plan for me, then people will be able to take it from here. I thought I was going to die.”
The man turned out to be an officer from the Capitol Police, but Ms Ocasio-Cortez said the experience had still left her shaken.
She said she was just one of many people “whose lives were endangered at the Capitol by the lies, threats, and violence”.
She had earlier taken to Twitter to accuse Senator Ted Cruz, who supported Mr Trump’s claims of voter fraud in the build-up to the riots, of “almost (having her) murdered three weeks ago”.
This story originally appeared on The Sun and has been republished with permission