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GOP rep on ‘Downton’ office: ‘Haters gonna hate’

Aaron Schock, Downton Abbey, Taylor Swift
ABC News

Rep. Aaron Schock has an explanation for what’s been called his “Downton Abbey”-inspired office: he’s “never been an old crusty white guy.”

The Illinois Republican made headlines this week after a report surfaced revealing his work digs in the Rayburn House Office Building received an extreme makeover from an interior decorator.

The design guru told The Washington Post — which was first to report the story — that the bright red walls, chandelier, feather arrangements and sconce with black candles, among other accouterments, were inspired by the dining room in the PBS drama.

{mosads}“I’m different. I came to Congress at 27,” Schock told ABC News in a Wednesday interview.

“When I go take a personal vacation I don’t sit on the beach, I go do active things,” said Schock, who is now 33 and once bared his abs on the cover of Men’s Health magazine. “And so, I’m also not going to live in a cave. So when I post an Instagram photo with me and my friends, as Taylor Swift said, ‘haters gonna hate.’”

“My office last year, or four years ago was a dark navy. And so obviously it wasn’t of interest four years ago,” Schock told ABC. “So I think the fact that it’s red makes people go, ‘Wow, that’s different.’”

Schock contends he’s never even seen an episode of the popular British series. “Maybe we’ll have a ‘Downton Abbey’ watch party?” cracked the lawmaker, before adding, “At the end of the day, regardless of what color wall you choose your office, the most important thing in Congress is what you do for your constituents and what you do for your job.”

Schock also said, “I’m not upset about the red walls.”

A government watchdog is calling on ethics officials to investigate the Illinois Republican for allegedly accepting free services from an Illinois interior decorator and paying for new furniture with campaign funds.

Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, also known as CREW, filed the complaint with the Office of Congressional Ethics on Tuesday. Republicans view the group as leaning to the left.

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