There’s no shortage of Republicans loudly proclaiming that the GOP has to get up to speed using Internet technology, particularly on blogs and the ubiquitous micro-blogging service, Twitter. This isn’t necessarily the easiest thing for a party whose officeholders (and voter base) are geared heavily towards the upper age ranges — just look at Norm Coleman’s advice for the GOP to compete on the “ethernet.”
But there’s one 75-year old U.S. Senator whose aggressive Twittering shows that sometimes the solution can have as many complications as the problem. Fifth-term Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA) not only uses his handy Blackberry to Twitter almost non-stop messages, but he’s even learned to do so in a whole other language — the online vernacular of a texting thirteen-year old.
Check out this morning’s message:
My carbon footprint is abt 25per cent of Al Gore. I’m greener than Al Gore. Is that enuf?
There is something endearing about the fact that Grassley, a septuagenarian U.S. Senator and truly an elder statesman of Iowa politics, so baldly puts his whims and thoughts out there for the public at large. Quite frankly, if a staffer had done this in a Senator’s name, he or she would risk getting fired. But no, the Senator himself does it.
Check out some of Grassley’s greatest hits, after the jump.Yesterday, Grassley told President Obama via Twitter that “you got nerve” for telling Congress to deliver on health care, while Obama himself was “sightseeing in Paris:”
Pres Obama you got nerve while u sightseeing in Paris to tell us”time to deliver” on health care. We still on skedul/even workinWKEND.
Later that day, he added:
Pres Obama while u sightseeing in Paris u said ‘time to delivr on healthcare’ When you are a “hammer” u think evrything is NAIL I’m no NAIL
For the record, Grassley’s staff confirmed to the Associated Press that he wrote these posts. Grassley’s spokesperson clarified to Greg Sargent what Grassley meant: “Senator Grassley has been urging the President to let the legislative process work so that health care reform legislation restructuring 17 percent of America’s economy will reflect broad consensus and garner bipartisan support from as many as 80 senators.”
Grassley has also chimed in on the helath care debate, as in this May 14 message:
Just read lettr to editr Somebody fr Eldora said we shld pass Canada single payer for all- like Senators hv- Wakeup! I hv Blue Cross
And on June 1, he commented on President Obama’s meeting with Ted Kennedy and Max Baucus:
The prez is meetin w Finance and Help Demo bc doesn’t appear they on same page Finance working biparty HELP more partisan. Where Prez land?
True, Grassley has faced persistent accusations that someone else must be ghost-writing his Tweets — which is an absurd accusation, as I’ve noted, because any staffer who wrote in this manner on a Senator’s behalf wouldn’t have the job much longer. But last month, Grassley even addressed these questions in a Tweet. Here’s what he said on May 12:
To the Hill reporter who thought I didn’t input my own AM Tweet today. Well believe me I did. My Bb is always w me
And on April 12:
Can’t bleve it!!! A reporter came all way to Senate floor to ask if I do my own tweetin. Of course I do.