Ocasio-Cortez needs to wait for lawmaker salary to kick in to afford DC apartment

Rep.-elect Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) told The New York Times in an interview Thursday that she will need to wait for her congressional salary to kick in before she can rent an apartment in D.C.

She explained that the transition period will be “very unusual, because I can’t really take a salary. I have three months without a salary before I’m a member of Congress. So, how do I get an apartment? Those little things are very real.”

Ocasio-Cortez also told the Times that she had saved money before leaving her job at a restaurant and had planned accordingly with her partner.

“We’re kind of just dealing with the logistics of it day by day, but I’ve really been just kind of squirreling away and then hoping that gets me to January,” she said.

Ocasio-Cortez explained on Twitter after the interview’s release that while everything with her housing is being figured out, her struggle with housing costs is one of “many little ways in which our electoral system isn’t even designed (nor prepared) for working-class people to lead.” 

Ocasio-Cortez, who on Tuesday became the youngest women in history elected to Congress, worked as a bartender before toppling veteran lawmaker Rep. Joseph Crowley (D-N.Y.) in the Democratic primary election in June.

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