At least three vulnerable House Democrats have reportedly returned campaign donations they received from the campaign of Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y.
Ocasio-Cortez’s campaign sent $5,000 donations to several lawmakers facing tough campaigns in 2022. At least three such Democrats — Reps. Carolyn Bourdeaux, D-Ga., Elissa Slotkin, D-Mich., and Conor Lamb, D-Penn — have either declined the donations or committed to returning them, according to a POLITICO report published on Friday.
The lawmakers are reportedly concerned that being tied to Ocasio-Cortez, who is an open Democratic socialist, would hurt them with swing voters.
Ocasio-Cortez’s payments reportedly went around the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC), which has butted heads with the second-term congresswoman.
Ocasio-Cortez’s campaign reportedly received wire transfer information from DCCC staffers without the higher-ups’ approval. Typically, vulnerable members will swoop up any financial boost they can find, but this time the donations came unsolicited and with no warning.
Staff at the DCCC reportedly did not foresee the double-edged sword of tying the controversial congresswoman to the party’s most vulnerable members in the House.
DCCC spokesman Chris Hayden did not talk about the specifics of the payments with POLITICO, but called the money transfers a “miscommunication.”
“We appreciate Rep. Ocasio-Cortez’s ongoing commitment to a Democratic majority,” said Hayden. “Due to a miscommunication, some transfers were made in error, but that has been addressed.”
“The GOP has spent four years saying the frontliners are all socialists. Now they’ve got the receipts to prove it,” a consultant who works with swing-seat Democrats told the outlet. “Anyone telling themselves this won’t be in campaign ads is in denial.”
“Frontliners” is a term used to describe vulnerable members up for reelection during an election cycle.
It is likely that the GOP will capitalize on the payments in political ads as the 2022 election cycle begins to pick up.
Ocasio-Cortez’s campaign, as with Lamb’s, Bourdeaux’s, and Slotkin’s campaigns, did not immediately return Fox News’ request for comment.