Politicians Rush to Delete Tweets Welcoming Bergdahl Home

Thursday, 05 Jun 2014 07:14 AM

By Elliot Jager

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Elected officials have been scrambling to delete hasty tweets and web postings welcoming Bowe Bergdahl home, The Washington Post reported.

As doubts arose about the wisdom of the Obama administration's deal to exchange Bergdahl for five senior Taliban commanders and about the captive soldier's war record, politicians who had expressed gratitude over his freedom sought to remove their remarks from social media – to no avail.

The Sunlight Foundation's Politwoops  captures political tweets and releases those that are subsequently erased. Washington Post New York reporter Philip Bump noted that the more politicians do not "want us to see something, man, do we want to see it."

Among the tweets removed were those from Republican Rep. Jim Renacci: "So glad to hear that Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl is coming home safely. He's a true American hero."

GOP Sen. Thad Cochran wrote: "Welcome home, Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl. A grateful America thanks you for your service."

Democrat Rep. Stephen Lynch, tweeted, "Warmest regards to his family with gratitude for his/their service and sacrifice," according to Mashable.

Republican Rep. Lee Terry, R-Neb., removed the statement, "A grateful nation welcomes the news of the return of Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl," from his website. Terry's spokesman explained, "We've heard and learned of some things that are extremely troubling in the last two days, and we believed it was appropriate to take it down," Mashable reported.

Republican Rep. Mark Amodei deleted a tweet: "Best news I've heard in a long time!" His office told Mashable, "Upon hearing the news, his spokesperson quickly posted something expressing happiness in the return of a POW, without knowing the terms of the release or consulting the congressman. When more became known, the post was taken down."

Bump wrote that it would be better if politicians explained why they had changed their minds. "Politicians don't have to know everything about everything. If what you've learned about Bergdahl prompts you to rethink your initial comments, say so. We are all adults!"

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