Hoyer calls on GOP lawmaker to apologize on House floor for accosting Ocasio-Cortez

House Majority Leader Steny HoyerSteny Hamilton HoyerOn The Money: Powell, Mnuchin stress limits of emergency loans | House seeks to salvage vote on spending bill | Economists tell lawmakers: Kill the virus to heal the economy House moves toward spending vote after bipartisan talks House Democrats mull delay on spending bill vote MORE (D-Md.) on Tuesday called on Rep. Ted YohoTheodore (Ted) Scott YohoKat Cammack wins Florida GOP primary in bid for Ted Yoho's seat The Hill's Convention Report: Democrats gear up for Day Two of convention Eyes turn to Ocasio-Cortez as she seeks to boost Biden MORE (R-Fla.) to apologize both personally to Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-CortezAlexandria Ocasio-CortezHouse passes bill to avert shutdown Trump attacks Omar for criticizing US: 'How did you do where you came from?' The Memo: Dems face balancing act on SCOTUS fight MORE (D-N.Y.) and publicly in a speech on the House floor for calling her "disgusting" and a "fucking bitch."

The Hill reported earlier Tuesday that Yoho had confronted Ocasio-Cortez on the Capitol steps the day before and berated her for recently suggesting that poverty and unemployment are driving a spike in crime in New York City during the coronavirus pandemic. He told her that she was "disgusting" and "out of your freaking mind," and as he walked away, Yoho added: "Fucking bitch."

Hoyer called Yoho's behavior "despicable" and "unacceptable."

ADVERTISEMENT

"Mr. Yoho owes not only the congresswoman an apology, but also an apology on the floor of the House of Representatives," the Maryland Democrat told reporters.

"It was the act of a bully," Hoyer added. "Bottom line, I think it was despicable conduct. It needs to be sanctioned." 

Ocasio-Cortez told The Hill after the exchange with Yoho that she had "never had that kind of abrupt, disgusting kind of disrespect levied at me."

Yoho, meanwhile, declined to discuss the encounter.

"No comment," he said. 

Ocasio-Cortez added in a tweet on Tuesday that she had never spoken to Yoho before he confronted her on Monday.

ADVERTISEMENT

"Believe it or not, I usually get along fine w/ my GOP colleagues. We know how to check our legislative sparring at the committee door," Ocasio-Cortez tweeted.

 

Ocasio-Cortez, who represents Queens and the Bronx, had suggested during a virtual town hall on July 9 that "economic desperation" resulting from the coronavirus pandemic had contributed to the rise in crime in New York City.

"Maybe this has to do with the fact that people aren't paying their rent and are scared to pay their rent, and so they go out and they need to feed their child and they don't have money," Ocasio-Cortez said. "So ... they're put in a position where they feel like they either need to shoplift some bread or go hungry that night."