What is it with politicians and Twitter? It’s probably safe to say the two don’t go together well, seeing as yet another Congressman has found himself on the hot seat after sending out inappropriate tweets.
Democratic Representative Steve Cohen sent flirty tweets to a university student that is being described by the New York Daily News as “gorgeous” and “blonde.” After sending out the tweets, apparently realizing his mistake, he deleted them in a hurry. Unfortunately those few minutes they were up allowed Cohen’s followers to photograph and post the tweets on the Sunlight Foundation Website.
The conversation between Cohen and 24-year-old Victoria Brink started very innocently. She tweeted at Cohen: “@RepCohen just saw you on tv!,” shortly after the State of the Union Address on Tuesday night.
Cohen responded with, “@victoria_brink pleased you are watching. ilu.” This is the tweet that was deleted just minutes after it was sent. However Cohen sent Brink another tweet on Wednesday that read, “@victoria_brink nice to know you were watchin SOTU (state of the union). Happy Valentines beautiful girl. ilu.” As was the case with the first message, this one was deleted after only 15 minutes.
Although Cohen’s tweets are relatively innocent in comparison to other recent Twitter scandals, commentators still drew comparisons between this and Anthony Weiner’s career-ending scandal in 2011; mainly because the “ilu” used by Cohen is usually understood to mean “I love you.”
The exchange between Brink and Cohen after the State of the Union wasn’t the first between the two. Approximately one month ago, the website Topsy documented Cohen’s tweet to Brink that read, “@victoria_brink miss u/will call later_-give me a good time/on Mississippi River with Coast Guard now. love you.”
Michael Pagan, Cohen’s spokesman, insists that there is nothing inappropriate about the tweets.
“She is a daughter of a longtime friend,” Pagan told New York Daily News. “He considers her like family. During the State of the Union Speech, she messaged him directly and when he replied he thought it was a direct message. There’s nothing romantic.”
According to Pagan, Cohen was not expecting the tweets to receive the attention that they did and feels bad for the spotlight it has put on Brink.
Whatever the truth here is, I just have one question: haven’t these people ever heard of texting?