As a kid in the 90s I was very excited that the White House website had an option for people to email the Clintons’ cat Socks. As a voter in 2011, I’m pleased to see the Obama administration keeping up with technology and using social networking as a productive way for voters and the government to interact. Today President Obama tweeted, “The time for putting party first is over. If you want to see a bipartisan #compromise, let Congress know. Call. Email. Tweet. ?BO.” A few minutes later the President’s Twitter team added, “You heard the President. So here’s what we’re doing: throughout the day we’ll post the Twitter handles of GOP lawmakers in each state.” The team has already provided the handles of reps from Alabama, Alaska and Arkansas.
As TechCrunch notes, the only thing missing from Obama’s tweets is a hashtag dedicated to this event. By urging Americans to call, email and tweet in the same message, the President recognizes that Twitter is an influential method of communication. He also sends out an unspoken message to government reps: if you’re not using Twitter and using it well, you’re not paying enough attention to your constituents.