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Social media wrap: Obama retweets his own Iraq speech [Updated]


So far, the most prominent politician to comment on President Obama's Iraq speech is President Obama.

Doesn't anyone else care?

Added at 4:13 p.m.: An earlier version of this post and its headline were based on the assumption that President Obama tweeted four times during his Oval Office address. In fact, the tweets appeared after his address.

The president tweeted four times after his 19-minute address -- all via automatic tweet feeder HootSuite -- the most interesting of which was:
"There were patriots who supported this war and who opposed it. We are united in appreciation for our troops and our hope for Iraq’s future."

Perennial Facebook poster Sen. David Vitter of Louisiana chimed in criticizing the president and Sen. John McCain took time out from tweeting with Snooki to say the president's withdrawal policy "will doom us to failure."  But then, silence. From either side.

Compared with the bipartisan outpouring in reaction to Justice Elena Kagan's ascent to the highest court in ...

the land, or a California court's recent gay marriage ruling or the Arizona immigration bill's passing, the brick wall that greeted Obama's second Oval Office address was, at best, highly unexpected.

Could it be that Democrats -- with the exception of California Rep. George Miller, who called for an end to the Afghan war -- are warily staying away from Obama in the online ether as well as on the campaign trail ahead of the November mid-terms?

If this were the case, it would be astonishing for a president with nearly 13 million Facebook followers who rode into office on a campaign largely founded on massive online support.  It could also be that Democrats are wary of associating themselves with an unpopular war.

And the Republicans? Maybe they're just sore that Obama got to announce the end of the mission and not George W. Bush (2003's "Mission Accomplished" debacle aside).

-- Craig Howie

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Photo: The president's online impact seems to have vanished. Credit: Reuters  

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Facebook had over 14K "likes" of his FB post and thousands of comments, mostly positive. I think Twitter is more fitting for those trying to be heard, whereas last night's speech was more about listening than making noise. I personally chatted with Jeremy Bird of Organizing for America on FB last night, and we shared what amounts to a virtual high five for helping to elect a man with such a dramatically different, new, and welcome leadership style from the previous administration or the alternative presented by the GOP.

Unfortunately, there are still 50,000 troops in Iraq who are still actively engaging in combat. Obama has made me seriously doubt him with these lies that the "war is over" and such.


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About the Columnist
A veteran foreign and national correspondent, Andrew Malcolm has served on the L.A. Times Editorial Board and was a Pulitzer finalist in 2004. He is the author of 10 nonfiction books and father of four. Read more.
President Obama
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