Debt Ceiling Debate Nears Deadline, Obama Gets Busy On Twitter

By: Josh Wolford - July 29, 2011

As the deadline to raise the debt ceiling fast approaches, the White House is using Twitter to rally support for what the call the “balanced approach.” In the simplest terms, this means an approach to tackle the national debt that both cuts spending and raises revenues through tax increases and/or elimination of tax breaks.

House Republicans and the President (with congressional Democrats) have been in negotiations for weeks, but a comprehensive plan has yet to emerge that analysts feel could pass the legislature and be signed by the President.

While the White House’s Twitter account is livening up the mood by Rickrolling its followers during an open Twitter forum, President Barack Obama’s Twitter account is busy rallying support for his vision.

In a continuation of Obama’s message from Monday night’s primetime speech on the debt situation (that resulted in the shutting down of dozens of congressional websites), his Twitter account is in the middle of a giant feed-swarming campaign to ask Twitter users to tweet their congressman.

Ever since it was announced that tweets coming directly from the mouth of the President would all be signed “BO,” they have been elusive. But we got one a couple of hours ago –

The time for putting party first is over. If you want to see a bipartisan #compromise, let Congress know. Call. Email. Tweet. —BO 2 hours ago via web · powered by @socialditto

After that, his team has been busy tweeting out messages to his near-10 million followers about how they can contact their congresspeople via Twitter to express their support for his plan.

As of right now, the Barack Obama account has listed the Twitter handles of Republican members of Congress in Alabama, Arkansas, Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado…are you sensing a pattern? As of the writing of this article, they are on Kentucky in the alphabetical listing of the states. Here’s what they are saying –

If you live in Arizona, ask @SenJonKyl and @SenJohnMcCain to support a bipartisan compromise to the debt crisis. 1 hour ago via web · powered by @socialditto

California Republican reps on Twitter: @RepJohnCampbell (CA-48),@DarrellIssa (CA-49), @BilbrayCA50 (CA-50), @repjeffdenham (CA-19) 1 hour ago via web · powered by @socialditto

Voters in Idaho: Tweet your Republican representative and ask them to support a bipartisan solution to the deficit crisis. #compromise 51 minutes ago via web · powered by @socialditto

Kentucky voters: Tweet @SenRandPaul and ask him to compromise on a balanced deficit solution. 7 minutes ago via web · powered by @socialditto

Put this in the “aggressive social media politicking” folder, as the White House is in the middle of an impressive Twitter campaign.

Is this type of Twitter interaction a good thing for either party? Should all politicians be using Twitter to this degree to spur debate? Let us know in the comments.

Josh Wolford

About the Author

Josh WolfordJosh Wolford is a writer for WebProNews. He likes beer, Japanese food, and movies that make him feel weird afterward. Mostly beer. Follow him on Twitter: @joshgwolf Instagram: @joshgwolf Google+: Joshua Wolford StumbleUpon: joshgwolf

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  • Caleb Market Secrets Blogger

    Just this morning on a Sunday political talk show a congeessman claimed it doesnt show leadership for a president to be tweeting, but I strongly believe Obama’s usage of the power of twitter to reach everyday ppl is a strong show of innovative leadership and is obviously effective considering all the “site shutdowns”.

    Let’s not forget this isn’t the first time Obama used social networking in his career…it was his use of FaceBook that greatly accerlated his launch into the Oval Office 😉

  • Rob NightHawk

    I believe that he should spend less time trying to work out his twitter fingers and get some real work done in office. As an American, I believe that all the greed in Washington has made them blind to what the real America is facing and that is a lot of “big trouble” if they can’t get over their little petty differences and get a grip.

    Did they not learn anything at all from the first Great Depression and what was needing to be done to get us out of that hole? For Pete’s sake, someone has to wake up and really drink the Kool-aid these days before anyone takes notice.