The Week on Politwoops: the campaign trail on Hoth, game show mix-up and a need for a competent typist
Happy Friday and welcome to the week’s review of Politwoops, Sunlight’s project to archive deleted tweets from U.S. politicians.
As the movements of the Arctic polar vortex cast a chill over much of the country, Minnesota gubernatorial candidate Marty Seifert took to Twitter to share two images from his campaigning in the weather — with edited scenes from the frozen Star Wars planet Hoth over urban Earth photographs. He deleted an initial version of one that included the hashtag “#mngop” and then opted for “#thisweek,” hoping to get the attention of news outlets, as his other tweet used the hashtags “#foxnews,” “#cnn” and “#stribpol.” The image link in the deletion, caught by Politwoops, reveals the source of the image is actually a user in Toronto and the photoshopped image is based on a 2013 photo from the Torstar News Service of students crossing Kings College Road at the University of Toronto. A reverse image search of his other tweet shows the photoshopped scenery is originally from a Brooklyn resident editing images of his community during the 2010 “snowpocalypse.”
Rep. Tim Ryan, D-Ohio, deleted a tweet after nine minutes that read “Look what city showed up on #Jeopardy tonight! #Youngstown #Ohio #Trebek” and included the image to the left. A number of Twitter users quickly pointed out his confusion of game shows, tweeting “How about #wheel… LOL” and “that ain’t jeopardy bruh man.”After realizing his mistake, Rep. Ryan reposted the tweet with the hashtag “#WheelofFortune” and removed “#Jeopardy” and “#Trebek.”
Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, or someone on his staff, got their fingers ahead of their thoughts and deleted a tweet that read “Rs have 23 ideas to help unemployed and grow jobs, but so far Harry Reid allow a Senate vote. People hurting but political games continue.” Being one of the many politicians familiar with Politwoops, the explanation for the deletion was tweeted and then deleted saying ““won’t allow a Senate vote,” I meant. Gee, I need a competent typist to get these tweets right.” His final successful tweet included even more changes and reads “Rs have 23 proposals for helping unemployed and growing jobs but Harry Reid, so far, refuses to even allow a Senate vote.” Sen. Cornyn joins Rep. Blake Farenthold, another Texas Republican, who often deletes his explanations of earlier deletions so they show up in Politwoops.
We continued our ramp up of challenger Twitter accounts this week and added another dozen or so accounts to Politwoops. Many additions were based on the official filings for candidacy with the Florida Division of Elections and in Maryland, the State Board of Election website even included the Twitter handles of many candidates. Thanks Maryland and please get in touch if there are other candidates we’re missing!