Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has found herself making headlines lately. Early last week, Ocasio-Cortez was accused by a Republican group of funneling thousands of dollars through an allied PAC which involved her boyfriend as well. Now, the freshman Congresswoman finds her name in headlines for all the wrong reasons once again. This time she’s being embarrassed by Wells Fargo’s CEO.
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On Tuesday, Timothy Sloan, the CEO of Wells Fargo, appeared in front of the House Financial Services Committee, led by Maine Democrat Maxine Waters, according to the Daily Wire. The hearing was originally supposed to discuss viable ways of holding megabanks like Wells Fargo accountable.
During the hearing, Ocasio-Cortez used her time off topic to discuss immigration, focusing on ICE and children being housed in cages. “Why was the bank involved in the caging of children and financing the caging of children to begin with?” Ocasio-Cortez directed towards Sloan.
Puzzled, Sloan responded back stating: “I don’t know how to answer that question because we weren’t.” Ocasio-Cortez, who was visibly flustered by his response, tried to rephrase her question.
“Uh, so in finan–, you’ve, you were financing, involved in debt financing in CoreCivic and GEO group, correct?” Sloan, who is still trying to understand her original question simply replied: “For a period of time, we were involved in financing one of the firms, we are not anymore. I’m not familiar with the specific assertion you are making, we were not involved in that.”
Seemingly getting nowhere, Ocasio-Cortez switched up her question by focusing on an entirely new topic — climate change and fossil fuel. “Should Wells Fargo be held responsible for the damages incurred by climate change due to the financing of fossil fuels and these projects?” Ocasio-Cortez asked.
Again, Sloan didn’t seem to understand Ocasio-Cortez’s question. “Say from spills, or when we have to reinvest in infrastructure building sea walls from the erosion of, um, from the erosion of infrastructure or cleanups, wildfires, etc…,” she added.
At this point, it seemed evident that Ocasio-Cortez had not done her homework or could not clearly organize her thoughts into questions. “Related to that pipeline?” Sloan replied. “I’m not aware that there’s been any of what you’ve described that’s occurred that’s related to that pipeline.”
As Sloan tried to finish answering her question, Ocasio-Cortez interrupted him only to switch the topic for the third time in the hearing. “How about, uh, the cleans up from the leaks of the Dakota Access pipeline?”
“I’m not aware of the leaks associated with the Dakota Access pipeline that you’re describing,” Sloan retorted. To close her poorly structured questions, Ocasio-Cortez asked: “So, hypothetically, if there was a leak from the Dakota Access pipeline, why shouldn’t Wells Fargo pay for the clean up of it since it paid for the construction of the pipeline itself?”
Sloan decided to drop some knowledge on her by stating: “Because we don’t operate the pipeline, we provide financing to the company that’s operating the pipeline.”
AOC: "Why was the bank involved in the caging of children and financing the caging of children to begin with?"
SLOAN: "I don't know how to answer that question because we weren't." pic.twitter.com/VJJOcFSn7v
— CSPAN (@cspan) March 12, 2019