CNN reports on what may be the dumbest, most self-immolating Tweet in the history of Tweets:
House Speaker Paul Ryan deleted a tweet Saturday touting the GOP tax overhaul after critics called him out for appearing out of touch with the reality of low-income individuals’ financial situations.
The tweet shared the story of a secretary who, according to a report by the Associated Press, was “pleasantly surprised her pay went up $1.50 a week.”
“A secretary at a public high school in Lancaster, PA, said she was pleasantly surprised her pay went up $1.50 a week … she said [that] will more than cover her Costco membership for the year,” Ryan tweeted with a link to the full article.
So, just in case there was anyone on the planet not already aware of this, the knock on the Republican tax cut bill passed last month is that the overwhelming majority of the benefits go to the richest people in the country. President Donald Trump stands to personally reap millions. Members of Congress voted for significant cuts to their own taxes. Christopher Ingraham of the Washington Post replied to Paul Ryan that the annual benefit of the tax cut to this public school secretary was less than Ryan makes in one hour as Speaker of the House.
People, including several prominent Democrats, noted on social media that $1.50 per week is not a significant pay bump.
It’s not just that $1.50 a week is a pitifully small amount of money in today’s economy, which of course it is. The issue is that Ryan chose to promote this pitiful amount of money as a success story. It’s as if Democrats came up with the absolute worst parody of a pitch for this bill, and somehow persuaded Ryan to repeat it like he means it. The PR damage from this gaffe is frankly incalculable, validating every trope about out-of-touch wealthy Republicans there ever was.
And yes, deleting a Tweet only ensures it will live on in infamy! If somebody on Paul Ryan’s staff gets fired over this episode, Democrats should give them a medal.