Who Obama Follows On Twitter Tells Us These 5 Crucial Details About Him
President Barack Obama has tweeted a total of three times since he got his first official Twitter account on Monday, but that doesn't mean he hasn't been building out his Twitter presence. As of Tuesday afternoon, Obama had 1.97 million followers, and he's followed 65 lucky people and government agencies. So far, his following has been pretty mild: He follows Secretary of State John Kerry, the U.S. Department of Labor and other federal agencies, and a few of the former presidents. Though it's mild, who Obama follows on Twitter tells us a lot about him.
The New York Times pointed out that it's a little strange that Obama only follows people within the Washington sphere on Twitter, especially since he claims to hate the scene and since officials said the account is supposed to “give Americans a new venue to engage on the issues that matter most to them."
Just last year, Obama told press he's "sort of like the circus bear that kind of breaks the chain," and then when he takes off, "everybody starts whispering, ‘The bear’s loose,’" according to the Times. He's definitely going to have to expand his following outside of Washington if he wants to feel like a loose bear — especially on Twitter, where competition is pretty fierce. Here's what we can learn about Obama from who he follows on Twitter so far.
1. He Doesn't Joke Around About Chicago Sports & His Loyalties
Staying true to his hometown, four of the President's 65-member following are Chicago sports teams.The are the Chicago Blackhawks hockey team, the Chicago White Sox baseball team, the Chicago Bears football team, and the Chicago Bulls basketball team. He's such a dedicated White Sox fan that he didn't follow the Chicago Cubs, and they definitely noticed.
Obama also didn't follow the Women's National Basketball Association's Chicago Sky, and they called him out on it too.
But Obama is a pretty great feminist — what with the White House recently forcing insurance providers to cover birth control under the Affordable Care Act and all — so hopefully he'll follow the women's team pronto. The Cubs might not be so lucky.
2. He's Obviously Pretty Serious About The Whole President Thing
Obama also follows the U.S. Department of Transportation, the Department of Commerce, the Department of the Interior, and the Department of Veterans Affairs, to name a few. And he follows a slew of department heads, including Secretary of Transportation Anthony Foxx and Secretary of Education Arne Duncan. He hasn't followed any "normal" people who work outside of the White House or D.C., generally, so right now his Twitter is strictly business. I guess that's pretty comforting since he is tasked with running the nation, but hopefully he'll loosen up soon and at least follow Beyoncé, especially if he wants to be a "loose bear."
3. He Hasn't Voiced Any Kind Of Support For Hillary Clinton With A Follow
Though Obama is following former President Bill Clinton, he didn't follow his former Secretary of State and 2016 presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton. Bill kind of pointed this out in a hilarious message to Obama:
Obama continued the joke, but still hasn't expanded his following to include Hillary or any other former members of his cabinet.
In Obama's defense, Hillary hasn't followed him yet, and he's the president so he definitely deserves that follow first.
4. He Is Loyal To His Alma Maters
Obama followed all three of the universities he attended: Occidental College for the first two years of undergraduate school, Columbia University for the last two years of undergraduate school, and Harvard University for law school. Strangely, Obama didn't follow the University of Chicago, where he worked for a short time and wrote his book, Dreams from My Father, and where his presidential library will be located.
5. He Might Be Keeping An Indirect Eye On His Haters
Obama also followed former President George H.W. Bush, whom he is kind of friends with. Bush welcomed Obama in Houston last April when he came to town for a few fundraising events, according to Business Insider. Bush told reporters he "just wanted to say hello," and, adorably, "when the president comes to your hometown, you show up and welcome him."
Unfortunately, Bush's sons, former President George W. Bush and 2016 possible presidential hopeful Jeb Bush, aren't so fond of the current president. Both of them have criticized Obama's foreign policy decisions. Bush's older son, George said, "In order to be an effective president ... When you say something you have to mean it. You gotta kill 'em," in reference to Obama's response to ISIS, according to U.S. News & World Report. Jeb also criticized Obama's policies after U.S. Special Forces soldiers killed a top ISIS leader in Syria on May 16, according to Politico:
This administration created the void that created this emerging caliphate that is far bigger than anything that existed before and there is no long-term strategy on how to deal with it.
Haters gonna hate, but at least Bush senior is being cool.
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