Rep. Katie Porter on GOP attacking Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez's account of Capitol riot: 'Absolutely untrue'

Stephen Proctor
·3 min read

Rep. Katie Porter (D-CA) joined Cuomo Prime Time Thursday, where she came to the defense of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez as Republicans question Ocasio-Cortez’s account of her experience during the Capitol insurrection on Jan. 6. On Monday, Ocasio-Cortez, one of the most maligned Democrats among conservative voices, recounted her experience on Instagram Live, speaking about the sounds she was hearing, and people yelling, “Where is she?” Ocasio-Cortez said she genuinely feared for her life, at one point even questioning whether a Capitol police officer was there to help her or harm her. Porter said the claims that Ocasio-Cortez is lying about her experience are “absolutely untrue.”

“She came to my office building. I saw her. She asked if she could come into my office. I am here to tell you and everybody, she was terrified,” Porter said, adding, “I have never seen her like that before. She was clearly very, very rattled and very, very scared.”

The controversy began Thursday morning when Rep. Nancy Mace (R-SC) posted a tweet contradicting Ocasio-Cortez’s claims.

However, on Jan. 6 as the insurrection was happening, Mace sang a much different tune.

Porter, who in a previous interview said she gave Ocasio-Cortez a pair of sneakers to wear in case she had to run for her life that day, said the two of them hid in her office for several hours, unsure of what was happening just outside.

“We had no way to know if and when the people who had penetrated the Capitol were coming through the tunnels to get us,” Porter said. “No way to know if the voices that we heard in the hallway were those of police officers or those of the mob.”

Porter added that everyone experienced the insurrection differently, and that Ocasio-Cortez’s experience should not be discounted.

“We were there. She was there. Everyone’s gonna have — everyone did have a different experience of that day,” Porter said. “Some of my colleagues were in their apartments during that time, watching it on TV. Some of them were in the Capitol itself. Some of them were evacuated by Secret Service. Some of them were on their own. But there's no point in taking away her experiences. The goal here is to make sure the Capitol is a safe workplace where we can focus on doing the job that the American people sent us there to do.”

Cuomo Prime Time airs weeknights at 9 p.m. on CNN.

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