While conservative media outlets such as the Daily Caller, the Daily Mail, Fox News and Epoch Times have been covering Federal Election Commission complaint filed against Rep. Alexandria Ocasia-Cortez (D-N.Y.), the lack of mainstream media coverage — which to date has been voluminous and fawning over the 29-year-old lawmaker — illustrates a clear omission bias.
The Associated Press was one of the only more mainstream outlets to cover the allegation in an “explainer.”
“Freshman New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and several of her allies were accused this week by a conservative group of improperly masking political spending during the 2018 campaign. Ocasio-Cortez is a vocal critic of untraceable money in politics, and the news provoked uproar from conservative media organizations,” the AP wrote.
“The conservative National Legal and Policy Center argued in a complaint to the Federal Election Commission on Sunday that Ocasio-Cortez and her allies “orchestrated an extensive off-the-books operation.” They requested an investigation, charging that political groups tied to Ocasio-Cortez and her advisers improperly obscured how money that they raised was spent … Ocasio-Cortez’s current chief of staff Saikat Chakrabarti helped found two groups, Justice Democrats and Brand New Congress, that aimed to elect progressive candidates to office. Ocasio-Cortez is also listed as a “governor” of Justice Democrats in a business filing.
“Records show that in 2016 and 2017 political action committees operated by the groups paid over $1 million to a company that Chakrabarti also ran, which was called Brand New Congress LLC. Limited liability companies are a tool sometimes used in politics to obscure the flow of money. Ordinarily, individual campaign expenses are reported to the FEC. But by routing the money instead to Chakrabarti’s company — which his lawyer says was founded to be a “one-stop” campaign vendor — they were able to label it as a “strategic consulting” expense and fulfill the FEC’s disclosure requirements. Chakrabarti’s company could then spend the money as it wanted without being obligated to report where it went.”
Accuracy in Media board chairman Dan Backer filed an FEC complaint on behalf of the Coolidge Reagan Foundation, which he discussed with the Daily Mail.
“Through this complex web of shadowy entities, Ocasio-Cortez and Chakrabarti ensured the flow of hundreds of thousands of dollars of unreported, illegal, dark money contributions to aid the campaigns of Ocasio-Cortez and other far-left Progressive Democrats,” the complaint reads.