Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez weighs in on the Taylor Swift music feud and takes aim at private equity firms

Alexandria Ocasio Cortez Taylor SwiftRep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and singer Taylor Swift.Reuters

  • Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez came to the defense of Taylor Swift in the singer's fight for her old music, slamming private equity groups.
  • "It doesn't stop at music," the congresswoman continued. "For people w/ friends or family who worked in retail & suddenly laid off or hours deeply cut (Toys R' Us, Sears, Sports Authority, etc) & sometimes stripped of severance, that goes back to PE as well. 1+ million jobs destroyed."
  • On Thursday, Swift posted a lengthy statement on Twitter and Tumblr accusing music mogul Scooter Braun and Scott Borchetta, who founded her former label Big Machine Records, of impeding her upcoming performance at the American Music Awards.
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Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez wight in on Taylor Swift's fight for ownership of her old music, defending the musician and attacking an opponent of her own: private equity groups.

"Private equity groups' predatory practices actively hurt millions of Americans," Ocasio-Cortez wrote in a tweet. "Their leveraged buyouts have destroyed the lives of retail workers across the country, scrapping 1+ million jobs. Now they're holding [Swift's] own music hostage. They need to be reigned in."

"It doesn't stop at music," the congresswoman continued. "For people w/ friends or family who worked in retail & suddenly laid off or hours deeply cut (Toys R' Us, Sears, Sports Authority, etc) & sometimes stripped of severance, that goes back to PE as well. 1+ million jobs destroyed."

On Thursday, Swift posted a lengthy statement on Twitter and Tumblr accusing music mogul Scooter Braun and Scott Borchetta, who founded her former label Big Machine Records, of impeding her upcoming performance at the American Music Awards.

She also claimed that Braun and Borchetta are preventing her from using her old music in an upcoming Netflix documentary because it violates their agreement that Swift cannot re-record her old records until next year.

In the statement, Swift pleaded to private equity giant The Carlyle Group to help her in her fight, citing them as the company that "put up money for the sale of my music to these two men." The Carlyle Group helped Braun and his company Ithaca Holdings fund the $300 million deal to buy Big Machine earlier this year. The firm could not be immediately reached for comment.

In response to Swift's accusations, Big Machine Records put out a statement denying that they were blocking her from performing at the AMAs or from making the Netflix documentary. "We share the collective goal of giving your fans the entertainment they both want and deserve," the statement reads.

Swift's PR representative shot back claiming that Big Machine had "flatly denied" the request for the AMAs and Netflix doc.

This is not the first time that the progressive congresswoman has criticized private equity groups. Earlier this year Ocasio-Cortez joined Sen. Elizabeth Warren and other Democratic lawmakers to introduce "the Stop Wall Street Looting Act, a comprehensive bill to reform the private equity industry by holding private equity firms jointly liable for the debts of companies under their control and by requiring greater transparency in private equity firms' practices."
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