The Week on Politwoops: An Illinois Mix-up, Fooled by Satire and Twitter Endorsements

An image from a deleted tweet archived by the Sunlight Foundation's Politwoops project. The associated message read: Nicole & I had a great time last night w/ Callista & @newtgingrich. Looking forward to his help in my race. #ILSEN.
Deleted photo via

Happy Friday, here is this week’s review of the notable deleted tweets from politicians captured and archived by Politwoops.

Former representative and current challenger for a House seat, Robert Dold, R-Ill., tweeted and deleted two messages that read “Nicole & I had a great time last night w/ Callista & @newtgingrich. Looking forward to his help in my race. #ILSEN.” The tweets included the image seen to the right and were rather perplexing because his wife’s name is Danielle, he used the hashtag ILSEN and, most importantly, he is not the man in the photo. After a brief search I found the same message and image came from the campaign account of Doug Truax, a newly declared candidate for Senate from Illinois. We’re not sure how this mix-up happened but perhaps they share a campaign consultant juggling too many Twitter accounts or maybe Mr. Truax was borrowing Mr. Dold’s phone?

Rep. Tom Latham, R-Iowa, mistook an article on satirical website the Daily Currant about how Veterans Day makes MSNBC host Chris Hayes sick for a real article. Rep. Latham vented his anger from his official Twitter account, saying “Disgust from MSNBC host for the very men and women who fought for his right to state that “soldiers aren’t heroes”. He deleted the tweet after just 21 seconds and it’s now archived on Politwoops. He apologized for the error by tweeting “When satire attacks! My apologies to @msnbc host Chris Hayes.The Huffington Post picked up on this exchange and wrote about the incident, citing Politwoops and finding that Rep. Latham also called Chris Hayes “America’s village idiot” on a Facebook post.

Rep. G. K. Butterfield, D-N.C., continued to delete tweets he sends incessantly from his Facebook account and House challenger Will Hurd, R-Texas, may have picked up this affliction. Yesterday, Mr. Hurd decided to clear out a number of tweets from the previous weeks that all read “I posted a new photo to Facebook” and linked to images over on the more popular social network.

Earlier this week we unveiled some new features on Politwoops to improve how retweets are displayed and fixing a minor bug with screenshots. We used an example from Senate challenger Karen Handel, R-Ga., who retweeted a fan who asks if she can be cloned and then deleted it. The eagle-eyed reporters over from the Political Insider at the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, noticed a different reason this deletion was notable and included this in their Daily Jolt roundup:

You know how many users of Twitter declare that “re-Tweets do not constitute endorsements”? It doesn’t always work that way in politics. Earlier this week, Karen Handel, the GOP candidate for U.S. Senate, re-tweeted the following compliment:

RT @FiercelyRight: @WillKremer Can we clone @karenhandel so we can have 2 #Conservative senators for GA?! #IMakeSlogans #OutWithIsakson

Four hours later, she apparently realized that she had just called U.S. Sen. Johnny Isakson something other than conservative and endorsed his removal. She deleted the Tweet. But not before the Sunlight Foundation caught it.

It really goes to show that there are all sorts of stories yet to be written about the deletions on Politwoops. A few of the additions to Politwoops include the campaign account for Rep. Eleanor Holmes Norton, D-D.C., (who is inexplicably left off the final “S” in congress), the campaign accounts for House challenger Martha McSally, R-Ariz., and Senate challenger Doug Truax, R-Ill. Have a great weekend and keep your eyes on Politwoops for any last minute surprises before tomorrow’s special election in Louisiana.