Luckey, who founded Oculus VR and has donated hundreds of thousands of dollars to the Republican Party and to President Trump’s reelection campaign, donated $500 to Ocasio-Cortez’s campaign in August and another $500 earlier this month, The Daily Beast reported, citing Federal Election Commission records.
Ocasio-Cortez’s team said it wasn’t aware of the donations until it was asked about them by The Daily Beast and that it had since refunded the total amount.
It’s unclear why Luckey — who left Facebook in 2017 following a controversy surrounding his support for Trump and his donation to Nimble America, a group that funded ads attacking Hillary Clinton — donated to the progressive freshman’s campaign.
“We first became aware of the donation when asked about it by The Daily Beast — as soon as we became aware of it we refunded the money,” campaign spokesman Corbin Trent told the outlet. “I assume the majority of the people who donate to the campaign do so because they support her ideology and her policies and because she supports working class people. I have no idea in this case.”
Luckey founded virtual reality firm Oculus VR and sold it to Facebook for more than $2 billion in 2014. Since then, he’s donated to federal and state GOP candidates as well as the Republican National Committee. He’s also donated $150,000 to the Trump Victory PAC.