Fresh hell alert! It’s happening—the President has arrived on Twitter:
Hello, Twitter! It's Barack. Really! Six years in, they're finally giving me my own account.
— President Obama (@POTUS) May 18, 2015
Here’s how the White House describes their vision for the new account:
The @POTUS Twitter account will serve as a new way for President Obama to engage directly with the American people, with tweets coming exclusively from him. President Obama is committed to making his Administration the most open and participatory in history, and @POTUS will give Americans a new venue to engage on the issues that matter most to them.
So…more Barack Obama? I’m sure you’re all extremely excited about this development.
From a strategic perspective, allowing the President to have “his own” (let’s be serious, it’s not “his own”) Twitter account is pretty brilliant. This Administration knows that it’s in hot water—they’re in a second term slide, and Republicans prepping for 2016 are already out in force with 1001 examples showing why Democrats should never be allowed to touch American policy ever again. Obama is a shell of his former enigmatic self, far too often comes across as defensive or aggressive, and as such endangers the party’s chances in 2016 and beyond.
They have only one thing left to do: humanize the husk and hope for the best.
The problem for conservatives right now is that these “humanization”-type tactics tend to work pretty well, at least when it comes to overall perception of a candidate or leader. If they use this @POTUS account correctly, it will open doors to “conversations” (although I doubt they’ll do much interacting—they’ll use it as a barometer for current and future PR pushes) with voters about the issues Republicans choose to hit hardest.
Almost any appearance of accessibility is a good thing, and this Twitter account stands to give the President and his party a boost. Whether that boost will translate beyond how a single, plugged-in voter feels when he or she reads the tweets remains to be seen.
All I know is that I want this to happen. Immediately:
Dear Mr. President (@POTUS), If you need any jokes for your new twitter account, just give me a call.
— Gilbert Gottfried (@RealGilbert) May 18, 2015
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