Current Weather
The Spy FM

#FollowFriday: A Tiny Shred Of Political Authenticity

Filed by KOSU News in Politics.
May 25, 2012

Note: We’ve asked NPR journalists to share their top five (or so) political Twitter accounts, and we’re featuring the series on #FollowFriday. Here are recommendations from reporter Andrea Seabrook (@RadioBabe).

I have a thing about political fakes on Twitter. I HATE them. And when I say fakes, I mean a handle that appears to be a senator or representative, but is very obviously written by some 22-year-old staffer.

See, I already get 200 or 300 emails a day (not kidding!) from congressional offices barking their points of view and snarling at the opposition. And that’s enough. I do not want that kind of stuff in my Twitter feed. In fact, let me be bold: That is not what Twitter is for.

What I do like is politicians whose tweets actually, really, identifiably come from them. The ones who tweet interesting facts, interact with their constituents, and even — gasp — crack jokes on occasion.

So on this fine #FF, let me recommend a few pols who walk the walk and tweet the tweet.

Rep. Steve Israel, D-N.Y. (@RepSteveIsrael): How could you doubt that the congressman from Long Island is writing his own tweets, with gems like this: “If u want to understand laws of physics, watch 8 lanes of traffic being merged into 4 at Queens Midtown Tunnel during Monday morning rush.”

Rep. Thad McCotter, R-Mich. (@ThadMcCotter): McCotter possesses that rare combination (in Washington, anyway) of heightened sense of humor with high IQ. Can you hear the sarcasm in his re-election announcement tweet? — “Once more unto the breach, Dear Friends.” (And don’t miss the pic.)

Rep. Sean Duffy, R-Wis. (@RepSeanDuffy): At only 40 years old, Duffy is about as close to being a digital native as any member of Congress. (The average age in the House is 57; in the Senate it’s 62.)

But it’s his zany attitude that makes following Duffy fun. For example, the recent hashtag trend he sparked, with a video of the Wisconsin ax he brought to Washington: “Where would you cut govt #spending? Reply using #bringtheax! RT and follow if you agree we need to cut spending.”

Newark, N.J., Mayor Cory Booker (@CoryBooker): After the Democratic mayor of New Jersey’s largest city rescued a woman from a burning building earlier this year, who wouldn’t want to follow his every move? He’s serious about Twitter: In the winter of 2010, Booker responded to a constituent’s tweet by showing up at her elderly father’s house to shovel snow in the driveway.

The cherry on top? His penchant for doling out 140 characters of inspiration. Like this verse of William Ernest Henley’s 1875 poem “Invictus”: ” ‘It matters not how strait the gate / How charged with punishments the scroll / I am the master of my fate / I am the captain of my soul’ WEH”

Rep. Rush Holt, D-N.J. (@RushHolt): You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to be in Congress, but it doesn’t hurt. Holt is proof of that. His serious and calm appraisals of political situations also manage to charm, and he’s good for some old-fashioned banter with colleagues. Like this response to the news that Newark Mayor Cory Booker (see above) is among the most popular politicians in the country; only 6 percent of his constituents have an unfavorable view of him: “@CoryBooker Next time try to save a sinking ship of kittens, that might convince that last 6%”

Happy Follow Friday, everyone. May your tweets be genuine.

<3, @RadioBabe

Follow our recommendations so far, and get future picks, here:!/nprpolitics/the-npr-twitterati [Copyright 2012 National Public Radio]

Leave a Reply

2PM to 3PM The Dinner Party

The Dinner Party

Think NPR meets Vanity Fair. In each episode, hosts Rico Gagliano & Brendan Francis Newnam talk with some of the world's most interesting celebrities, and along the way equip you with bad jokes, fresh drink recipes, hot food finds, odd news stories... and etiquette tips from the likes of Henry Rollins and Dick Cavett. It's all you need to get an edge in your weekend conversations. Past guests include Michelle Williams, Judd Apatow, Kid Cudi and Sir Richard Branson. Wallpaper magazine calls The Dinner Party one of the Top 40 Reasons To Live In The USA.

Listen Live Now!

3PM to 4PM The Splendid Table

The Splendid Table

Hosted by award-winning Lynne Rossetto Kasper, The Splendid Table is a culinary, culture and lifestyle program that celebrates food and its ability to touch the lives and feed the souls of everyone.

View the program guide!

4PM to 5PM Weekend All Things Considered

Weekend All Things Considered

View the program guide!

Upcoming Events in your area (Submit your event today!)

Streaming audio and podcasts

Stream KOSU on your smartphone

Phone Streaming

SmartPhone listening options on this page are intended for many iPhones, Blackberries, etc. with low-cost software applications available to listen to our full-time web streams, both News on KOSU-1 and Classical on KOSU-2.

Learn more about our complete range of streaming services

We're perfecting the patient experience - Stillwater Medical Center