After the firing of Jofi Joseph, the National Security Council staffer who was fired for criticizing senior Administration officials under the nom de plume @NatSecWonk, the White House has launched a new effort on Twitter, part of a communication strategy focusing on targeted messages on a variety of outlets.
Jennifer Epsetin of Politico reports that “More than a dozen senior-level officials and press staffers have joined Twitter since August — these accounts have names and titles attached and have been verified by Twitter — to promote President Barack Obama’s agenda, respond to policy questions, argue with skeptical journalists and, often, cheer on their favorite sports teams.”
“There was always a desire to engage more on Twitter,” said Matt Lehrich (@Lehrich44), an assistant press secretary who signed up this summer. Economic aides, for instance, had used @WhiteHouse to answer questions, so it was “sort of a natural evolution” for them to get their own accounts.
According to the report, staffers’ accounts have followers numbered in the hundreds or thousands rather than the 4.3 million that follow @WhiteHouse, while the @BarackObama account, run by the pro-Obama nonprofit Organizing for Action, has more than 39 million.