President Obama’s Twitter account, a powerful messaging and fundraising tool with almost 29 million followers, is now under the control of Organizing for Action, the independent spinoff of the president’s 2012 campaign organization.
Republicans and independent watchdog groups say that the relationship between the White House and the big donors who will fund OFA is evidence that the president is now engaged in the kind of pay-for-play politics that Obama has in the past decried.
“The fact that President Obama’s Twitter account is being managed by Organizing for Action is one more example that shows that OFA is functioning as an unprecedented, privately funded arm of the presidency that accepts unlimited contributions from wealthy donors,” said Fred Wertheimer, head of the Democracy 21 watchdog group. “OFA represents bad public policy and a terrible precedent for the future, as other federal officeholders can be expected to go down this dangerous path.”
The White House has always insisted that OFA, despite its history as the president’s 2012 campaign organization, is now an entirely independent entity. But in the latest example of the blurred lines between public officials and the independent groups that can now raise unlimited amounts of anonymous political cash, Obama has effectively begun sharing his eponymous @BarackObama Twitter account with the group. The president will continue to tweet on it, according OFA spokeswoman Katie Hogan.