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Social Media Platforms Become Campaigning Hubs

The Florida Primary’s outcome was very predictable with Mitt Romney receiving 46.4 percent of the vote. Though congratulations are in order for Romney, his victory comes from running negative ads against the competition to make them seem like terrible candidates. According to CNN, around 99% of the Romney campaign’s 3,276 ads were negative and attacked other candidates. The Campaign Media Analysis Group found that a total of 92% of political ads shown in Florida last week were negative ones. Some have called the Florida Primary one of the dirtiest primaries in recent history.

As the race for the Republican nomination progresses, the presidential candidates have  also taken to social media sites to “sling mud” at their constituents. Mitt Romney tweeted on January 28, “History Lesson: In 1997, Democrats and Republicans overwhelmingly found Newt Gingrich guilty of ethics violations.” Newt Gingrich tweeted on January 27, “1 debate, 5 false statements. @mittromney has some explaining to do.”

Since there are more than 100 million active Twitter users, it is no wonder that the candidates use the social media platform as a campaign tool. Candidates can reach out to voters and respond to accusations by rivals instantly. Campaigns use hashtags and videos to get their points across in a clear and concise manner. They can also tweet their hearts out about each other.

The instantaneous nature of the platform makes Twitter almost like a warning system. Each campaign closely monitors the tweets of the other candidates, reporters, and major news outlets to better prepare themselves for press conferences and interviews. Debate viewers often tweet reactions along with hashtags. Campaigns are able to search for hashtags like “#presidentialdebate” and instantly see reactions to their candidate’s arguments.

Campaigning on social media sites brings candidates closer with the public than ever before. In the case of Twitter, the public can tweet directly at a candidate and express his or her concerns, questions, or comments. It is a great tool and the campaigners say they will continue to use Twitter.