Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez wore a dress with ‘Tax The Rich” written across the back to the star-studded Met Gala.
The white dress by Brother Vellies features the slogan in red writing across the back.
The 31-year-old representative carried a bag with a matching slogan to the event, which was themed, “In America: A Lexicon of Fashion.” This year’s theme is intended to “reexamine American identity and Fashion” according to Andrew Bolton, the Wendy Yu Curator in Charge of the Costume Institute.
“I’ve been really impressed by American designers’ responses to the social and political climate, particularly around issues of body inclusivity and gender fluidity, and I’m just finding their work very, very self-reflective … I really do believe that American fashion is undergoing a renaissance. I think young designers in particular are at the vanguard of discussions about diversity and inclusion, as well as sustainability and transparency, much more so than their European counterparts, maybe with the exception of the English designers,” he told the fashion magazine
— The Recount (@therecount) September 13, 2021
According to Vogue, the Met Gala is an “evening when designers, models, and Hollywood stars convene in the year’s most over-the-top looks to celebrate and fundraise at a new exhibit from the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute.”
Aurora James, founder and creative director of Brother Vellies, told Vogue, “We must always continue to push ourselves, push our colleagues, push the culture and push the country forward. Fashion is changing, America is changing. And as far as this theme goes, I think Alexandria and I are a great embodiment of the language fashion needs to consider adding to the general lexicon as we work towards a more sustainable, inclusive, and empowered future.”
James is also the founder of the 15 Percent Pledge which “seeks economic equality and prosperity for Black future founders, Black students, and Black people in the workforce.”
The New York Post reports that tickets for the 2021 Met Galas were $35,000 each and tables started at $200,000.
Twitter had mixed reactions to AOC’s dress choice. While some praised her, others saw it as a hypocritical or foolish move.
— Al 🐂 (@MrAl243) September 14, 2021
AOC went to #MetGala and wore dress that says “Tax the rich.” A ticket to Met Gala costs $30K. Partying with celebrities at an elitist event makes us Dems look awful. Especially in the middle of a voting rights crisis and women’s rights in TX hanging by a thread. Do better, AOC. pic.twitter.com/kuLZ6tMWhp
— Uncovering The Truth (@UncvrngTheTruth) September 14, 2021
Her campaign paid a political merchandise firm over $1.4 million in the first six months of 2021. Her online store now sells “T-shirts, sweatshirts and other merchandise with her name, ‘AOC’ initials or slogans including ‘Tax the Rich’ and ‘Fight for our Future,’ efforts aimed at both fundraising and building the second-term lawmaker’s profile nationally,” per Reuters. The outlet reports “the Ocasio-Cortez campaign could be making a 50% profit or more on much of its sales.”