WASHINGTON: An attempt to discredit new US congresswoman and leftist poster child Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez with a video of her dancing as a student backfired spectacularly on Friday, triggering eye rolls and a barrage of whimsical memes.

The 30-second clip of a younger Ocasio-Cortez, now 29, dancing on the roof of a building quickly went viral on social media — but the troll attempt fell flat, with users rushing to praise rather than shame her. “Well, @AOC is officially done. She’ll never recover from the world seeing her… (watches video) …dancing adorably and having fun with her friends in high school?” tweeted the comedian Patton Oswalt, tongue-in-cheek.

The edited clip that began circulating widely on Thursday shows an upbeat Ocasio-Cortez twirling and hamming it up for the camera.

“Here is America’s favourite commie know-it-all acting like the clueless nitwit she is,” read the original tweet from @AnonymousQ1776, who described it as a video from her high school days. The Twitterverse later unearthed the full video posted on YouTube eight years ago, when viral dance crazes began taking the internet by storm.

The short was filmed at Boston University, and sees Ocasio-Cortez —who graduated from there in 2011 — join peers to pay wholesome homage to an iconic dance scene from the 1980s film The Breakfast Club, set to the French indie pop band Phoenix’s “Lisztomania”.

The trolling intended as a “gotcha” moment for the New York politician — who was sworn in to Congress on Thursday, becoming the legislative body’s youngest woman ever. In response to the dancing video, Ocasio-Cortez posted a fresh clip of herself shimmying into her office on Capitol Hill, as the counterculture classic hit “War” plays. “I hear the GOP thinks women dancing are scandalous,” she wrote. “Wait till they find out Congresswomen dance too!”

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