Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who has long been an advocate for mask-wearing during the pandemic was spotted partying in Miami on Sunday without a face covering altogether as she socialized with actor Billy Porter.
The New York congresswoman who has been in Miami since before the new year, appeared to be continuing her vacation in the Sunshine State at a packed drag bar event in the city.
In a short clip posted to social media, Ocasio-Cortez could be seen waving to other bargoers to cheers and applause while being introduced on stage by the MC of the ‘drag brunch’ event.
The compere could be heard lauding the politician, eliciting wild cheers from gathered diners.
Ocasio-Cortez’s presence in Florida, a state that she had long criticized for its lax coronavirus restrictions during earlier waves of the pandemic appeared to irk some Republicans and conservative journalists who became tired of her using the southern state as an example of how not to do things.
‘AOC is STILL lounging it up in Florida, in large crowds and maskless. This time at a Drag Queen bar in Miami. Rules for thee but not for me,’ wrote right wing journalist Brendon Leslie.
‘For those of you with zero sense of humor: the whole point of this post is to expose hypocrisy. We don’t actually care she’s maskless. We care she fear mongers about Florida but then has the audacity to vacation here,’ he added.
‘AOC was spotted partying in a bar maskless in the great free state of Florida. Absolute hypocrite,’ tweeted Twitter account Libs of Tik Tok.
The congresswoman also angered Republicans days earlier when a photo of her December 30 lunch in Miami was published, with her opponents noting that the strident supporter of mask mandates was also not wearing one then as well.
‘Welcome to Florida, AOC!’ tweeted the account of the state’s Republican governor, Ron DeSantis.
‘We hope you’re enjoying a taste of freedom here in the Sunshine State thanks to @RonDeSantisFL’s leadership.’
New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is seen hugging host Billy Porter at an outdoors drag event the the Palace Bar over New Year’s Weekend in a photo posted on Sunday
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is seen hugging Billy Porter at a party event in Miami
The pair put their arms around one another to take a selfie together
New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is seen hugging a drag performer onstage at an outdoors event hosted by Billy Porter
AOC became the focus of the brunch after being spotted at by the presenter
AOC was seen completely maskless at the event in Miami
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez was spotted partying in Miami on Sunday without a face mask. Actor, Billy Porter, can be seen in drag, in a red jacket and dress as he hosted the brunch
The New York congresswoman appeared to be continuing her new year’s vacation in the Sunshine State at a packed drag bar. The crowd cheered her as the compere introduced her
AOC could be seen blowing kisses to other diners who cheered her as she walked by
There are no mask mandates in place in the state of Florida currently, despite the number of COVID-19 cases in the state having increased dramatically in the last 14 days by 948% – the highest in the nation
There are no mask mandates in place in the state of Florida currently, despite the number of COVID-19 cases in the state having increased dramatically in the last 14 days by 948% – the highest increase in the nation.
In Florida on Saturday, 56,865 new cases were reported. One day earlier, more than 75,900 new cases of COVID-19 were reported in the state.
Friday’s figures marked a single-day record for the number of new cases in the state.
It breaks the record set a day earlier, on Thursday, when more than 58,000 cases were reported in the state.
Currently both Miami-Dade and Broward counties are measuring positivity rates of 30 percent.
Ocasio-Cortez’s refusal to wear a face mask in public appeared to irk some Republicans and Conservative journalists who became tired of her using Florida as an example of how not to do things earlier in the pandemic
Days earlier, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez was pictured raising a class over sushi with her boyfriend, Riley Roberts while vacationing in Miami
Ocasio-Cortez had swapped the New York chill for sunny Florida for a New Year getaway
In response to DeSantis’ team reaching out to the congresswoman and welcoming her to the state Ocasio-Cortez hit back, replying that he should take lessons from the governor of New York, Kathy Hochul.
Ocasio-Cortez appeared to be oblivious to the fact that Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has spent the last two weeks accompanying his wife, Casey, to cancer treatments
‘Hasn’t Gov. DeSantis been inexplicably missing for like 2 weeks?
‘If he’s around, I would be happy to say hello. His social media team seems to have been posting old photos for weeks.
‘In the meantime, perhaps I could help with local organizing. Folks are quite receptive here.
‘I’d also be happy to share some notes from @GovKathyHochul’s work in NY since he seems to be in need of tips!’
Ocasio-Cortez appeared to be oblivious to the fact that the Florida Governor had spent the last two weeks accompanying his wife to cancer treatments.
The Republican governor had reduced the number of public appearances he was making amid a spike in Covid-19 cases and has not held a public press conference since December 17.
Democrats had criticized him for ‘going missing’ amid the current new spike in coronavirus cases.
DeSantis’s wife Casey was diagnosed with breast cancer in October. The couple have three children together.
In other bizarre responses to GOP critics, Ocasio-Cortez couldn’t help but hit back claiming that they were angry with her because they couldn’t date her.
The conversation generated a plethora of replies, with former Trump advisor Steve Cortes angered by Ocasio-Cortez ‘frolicking in free Florida’, while her home state enforced mask mandates.
The New York mask mandate only applies indoors, and people are allowed to remove masks while eating, there are no such statewide mandates in place in Florida.
Cortes tweeted: ‘1. If Leftists like AOC actually thought mandates and masking worked, they wouldn’t be frolicking in free FL.
‘2. Her guy is showing his gross pale male feet in public (not at a pool/beach) with hideous sandals.
‘O for 2…’
Ocasio-Cortez replied with scorn, calling Cortes a ‘creepy weirdo’ for her remarks about her boyfriend’s Birkenstock sandals.
‘If Republicans are mad they can’t date me they can just say that instead of projecting their sexual frustrations onto my boyfriend’s feet. Ya creepy weirdos.’
She continued: ‘It’s starting to get old ignoring the very obvious, strange, and deranged sexual frustrations that underpin the Republican fixation on me, women,& LGBT+ people in general.
‘These people clearly need therapy, won’t do it, and use politics as their outlet instead. It’s really weird.’
Ian Haworth, editor of Daily Wire, tweeted: ‘I definitely do not want to date you.’
Ocasio-Cortez replied: ‘I’m glad you felt the need to share that with the world. Don’t worry, this is a totally normal thought to have and share as an editor of a right-wing website, and totally doesn’t prove my point at all.
‘I hear if you say it enough times you’ll actually start to believe it.’
She concluded with an attack on Haworth’s conservative site.
‘The fact that these people are so creepy/weird yet are also the ones responsible for shaping the NEWS HEADLINES we all see in media should be really concerning.
‘I don’t even want to know what knuckle-dragging thoughts these people have all day while covering women in politics.’
Brian Mast, a Republican congressman for Florida, wrote on Twitter: ‘Welcome to Florida AOC. Leave your politics in New York and enjoy a taste of freedom in our great state!’
Shawn Farash, who runs the conservative group Long Island Loud Majority, said her visit amounted to an endorsement of DeSantis.
‘Hey @AOC tell me you endorse @RonDeSantisFL without telling me you endorse @RonDeSantisFL,’ he wrote.
Republican anger was in part retaliation for her own criticism of Ted Cruz, the Republican senator for Texas.
In February, Ocasio-Cortez demanded Cruz resign for making a trip to Cancun with his family while Texas was ravaged by a deadly winter storm.
‘If Sen. Cruz had resigned back in January after helping gin up a violent insurrection that killed several people, he could’ve taken his vacation in peace,’ she tweeted at the time.
‘Texans should continue to demand his resignation.’
In September 2021, in response to a thread on the storms in New York, she tweeted: ‘I know Republicans’ idea of ‘disaster relief’ is flying to Cancun while the power’s still out, but unlike that approach I actually give a damn.’
Ocasio-Cortez’s trip came as COVID cases exploded again in New York.
Residents have been forced to line up for hours for tests and many are planning to spend New Year’s Eve at home, with restaurants closing and amid fears of the Omicron surge.
New York State is starting 2022 with a new single-day COVID case record – 85,476 new infections.
In New York City, more than one in five tests are positive, with the 7-day positivity rate just shy of 20%.
Governor Kathy Hochul has also introduced her ‘2.0 Plan’ to fight Omicron by extending her ‘vax and mask’ mandate until February 1.
Towards the end of last week more than 20 percent of the city’s police officers and 30 percent of paramedics were out sick.
Travelers coming and going from LaGuardia Airport line up for COVID testing in the parking garage on Thursday
The U.S. has been hit by massive testing shortages that the Biden administration has vowed to fix in the New Year
On Sunday, top U.S. infectious disease expert Anthony Fauci said there was still a danger of a surge in hospitalization due to a large number of coronavirus cases even as early data suggests the Omicron COVID-19 variant is less severe.
The Omicron variant was estimated to be 58.6% of the coronavirus variants circulating in the United States as of December 25, according to data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
U.S. authorities registered at least 346,869 new coronavirus on Saturday with the U.S. death toll from COVID-19 rising by at least 377 to 828,819.
Americans are still waiting hours in lines to be tested for COVID-19. Above, a health care workers tests residents in Miami, Florida, at a drive-through COVID testing site on Wednesday
In total, the United States recorded 2.49 million cases within the past week, outpacing the country’s previous record of 1.7 million new cases recorded in the one-week period from January 3 through January 9. People are pictured here waiting on line to get a COVID test in Houston, Texas – which has seen a spike in cases recently