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These are the 25 members of Congress you should be following on Twitter

Some are sharp. Some are funny. None of them use #MAGA


Taylor Link
November 11, 2017 8:00PM (UTC)


President Donald Trump's presence on Twitter may have jaded some people from using the platform — too much vitriol and horse pucky for one social network. But put that in the barn for a while, because Twitter, as a whole, offers value to users, especially those interested in politics.

Twitter connects constituents to their elected representatives, allowing them to interact in a manner unseen in democratic history. It also enables Americans to witness the inner workings of a politician's office, including all the pageantry and base triviality that comes with the job.

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Most U.S. politicians delegate Twitter duties to lowly interns who merely share their boss's statements or photo opportunities. Some politicians, however, directly handle their own accounts, writing tweets that candidly express their thoughts on a given issue.

A few of these politicians have mastered the art of Twitter, contributing to the discourse of the day while maintaining a sense of humanity that seems to elude the current president. Others are just plain old entertaining.

Contrary to popular (and oftentimes reasonable) belief, there are members of Congress who are absolutely worth following on Twitter. Indeed, some of these politicians are among the most distinctive and valuable on social media inside or outside of the Beltway. If Twitter users need to remind themselves that Trump is not the only public figure on the internet with his hands on the levers, this is a list of respectable politicians who make social media almost — that's almost — worthwhile.
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Adam Schiff, @RepAdamSchiff
A U.S. representative for the Hollywood-Glendale, California, area, Adam Schiff is the ranking member of the House Intelligence Committee. Schiff, a Democrat, is also currently leading one of the investigations into Russia's election interference, an exceptionally complicated matter that few understand.

But it's more than that which makes Schiff worth a follow. Overall, he's been one of the few members of Congress who can distill the ongoing investigations. His tweets provide insight into how Russia interfered and what role, if any, the Trump campaign had in assisting those efforts.

Schiff also has a firm grasp on foreign policy issues at large and is particularly outspoken against the depletion of the State Department; in addition, he advocates for more diplomacy perpetrated by the Trump administration.

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Justin Amash, @justinamash
A U.S. representative from western Michigan, Justin Amash is the chairman of the Liberty Caucus in the House of Representatives. Amash, a Republican, is one of the few libertarians in Congress who holds true to his principles, making him a true relief from and counter to many of his colleagues. Amash has been praised by the ACLU for his work on civil liberties and frequently uses his Twitter platform to explain his stance on issues.

Amash has gained notoriety, in part, because he's been a vocal critic of Trump. He's been unafraid to push back against the president when the White House has tried to quash dissent.

Amash has clearly made his name known in the White House, as he's been the target of scorn from Trump aides and staffers.

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Amash doesn't seem all that concerned that he's on the wrong side of the president. He's always reliable to call out Trump, even if it displeases some of his constituents.


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Elizabeth Warren, @SenWarren

A frontrunner for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination, Elizabeth Warren is one of the most prominent voices in America, let alone on Twitter. The progressive senator from Massachusetts has been a beacon of hope for Democrats hoping for a comeback after the disastrous 2016 elections. Warren uses her platform on Twitter to go after the president, criticizing his agenda whenever it disproportionately affects poor people. If an outsider to politics wants to know what the Democratic Party stands for — or at least, what it should stand for — a glimpse at Warren's Twitter account would light the way.

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marcorubio-gateway   Marco Rubio, @marcorubio The Florida senator's best self is on Twitter. Democrats perpetually find themselves annoyed with Rubio, who at times presents himself as the only sensible Republican in Congress, but often fails to live up to that caricature. Rubio has done little on the Hill to challenge the Trump administration. He has, however, consistently used his Twitter account to take subtle shots at the president. In the form of subtweets, Rubio likes to quote scripture on Twitter, conveniently citing quotes from Proverbs that happen to be pertinent to news about the White House.

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While this form of resistance will not bring down the president, few can deny these tweets are wildly entertaining.    

alfranken-gateway   Al Franken, @SenFranken@alfranken Much like his senatorial office, Al Franken does not use his platform on Twitter to crack jokes or relive his glory years on "Saturday Night Live." The progressive Minnesotan has taken his job seriously since entering the Senate, and his Twitter account often reflects that professionalism. Franken often tweets about how he is helping his constituents back at home. With this, his Twitter account becomes a window into the day-to-day life of a senator's office and demonstrates that, yes, some members of Congress actually do care about improving the lives of Americans. 

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Franken also utilizes Twitter to spread his Democratic values, making his account one of the key channels of the Democratic Party.

 

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John McCain, @SenJohnMcCain

Sen. John McCain is often hailed as a maverick in Congress. In 2017, he lived up to that label, proving that, at least for him, country can come before party. The Arizona senator helped defeat the repeal of the Affordable Care Act and has called for order in the Senate. He has also used his Twitter account to propagate his views, often delineating his positions from those held by the rest of his party.

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kamalaharris-gateway   Kamala Harris, @KamalaHarris The freshman senator from California represents the future of the Democratic Party. Appropriately, she has a strong Twitter game that highlights her platform. 

 

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Jeff Flake, @JeffFlake

The other senator from Arizona, Jeff Flake, announced his intentions to retire from Congress when his term ends. Flake has found few allies in the Senate, as the conservative has witnessed his party abandon its ideals for the convenience of Trump and his regressive ideology. Untethered from the daunting challenge of re-election, Flake now openly defies the Republican Party, using Twitter to voice his protest.

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amyklobuchar-gateway   Amy Klobuchar, @amyklobuchar The senior senator from Minnesota, Amy Klobuchar is also considered a favorite for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination. Klobuchar is a leading voice of the Democratic Party, and her Twitter account accurately represents her tenure in office. She also enjoys tweeting about Minnesota's sports teams, which is nice.

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Bob Corker, @SenBobCorker

Sen. Bob Corker, like Sen. Flake, has announced that he will not run for re-election. The Republican from Tennessee obviously does not appreciate where his party is heading under Trump's leadership. Corker's decision to retire riled up the president, who decided to tweet his displeasure at the senator. In turn, Corker struck back at Trump with a set of tweets that could be considered some of the best of 2017.

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ileanaroslehtinen-gateway   Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, @RosLehtinen A U.S. representative of south Florida, Ileana Ros-Lehtinen is one of the few moderate Republicans in Congress. She also one of the more active politicians on Twitter. The congresswoman bucks her party from time to time, making her a must-follow for people tired of all the tribalism in politics. She also tweets in Spanish for her constituents.

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Brian Schatz, @brianschatz

Sen. Brian Schatz is a prolific tweeter who often targets Republicans for their moral rot.

 

Solid burns all.
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Adam Kinzinger, @RepKinzinger

Much like other Republicans on this list, Adam Kinzinger has not been one of Trump's biggest fans. A U.S. congressman from Illinois, Kinzinger is a military veteran who does not think highly of Trump's Twitter habits. Kinzinger is also an expert on foreign policy and is in favor of giving the space needed to special counsel Robert Mueller.

berniesanders-gatewayBernie Sanders, @SenSanders Sen. Bernie Sanders made a name for himself during the 2016 presidential election. The Independent senator from Vermont won over many with his progressive economic platform. While Sanders may have become a household name in 2016, he's been a known quantity on Twitter for many years. As he did on the campaign trail, Sanders articulates his positions on Twitter clearly and concisely. If someone wants to know how the American left is viewing things, Sanders is a must-follow.

 

chuckgrassley-gatewayChuck Grassley, @ChuckGrassley Sen. Chuck Grassley is worth a follow on Twitter simply for his personal war on the History Channel, now named "History." The Iowa Republican does not appreciate the network's programming and sardonically informs his followers whenever the channel actually covers history. It's some tight, tight dragging.

chrismurphy-gatewayChris Murphy, @ChrisMurphyCT The senator from Connecticut uses the social media network as a weapon against the NRA and Republicans. If you ever need a shot of espresso in the fight against the gun lobby, look him up.

elisestefanik-gatewayElise Stefanik, @EliseStefanik The youngest member of Congress, Elise Stefanik is a Republican who represents parts of Upstate New York. A co-chair of the moderate Tuesday Group, Stefanik could be one of the Republicans who can help lead the party out of the Dark Ages (a.k.a. the Trump era). As a sensible Republican, her presence on Twitter serves a reminder that the party isn't completely dysfunctional.

keithellison-gatewayKeith Ellison, @keithellison One of the leading progressives in the Democratic Party, Rep. Keith Ellison is a necessary follow on Twitter. The Minnesota congressman often shares news stories and editorials that are relevant to progressive causes, activating Democratic voters and helping to forge the future of the party.


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Rand Paul, @Rand Paul

It's been a strange year for Sen. Rand Paul. He's been a victim of an assault by his neighbor and a golfing partner of Trump — both shocking developments. As a libertarian, Paul is not always in lockstep with the Republican Party, making him a loose cannon of sorts. While Paul is no friend of liberals, his Twitter account acts as an MRI looking into the mind of a libertarian.

tedlieu-gateway   Ted Lieu, @tedlieu Because Trump is the literal embodiment of a Twitter troll, at least one Democrat in Congress has to fight fire with fire. Rep. Ted Lieu serves that purpose, often attacking the president for his corruptive tendencies. The header image on his account compares former President Barack Obama's inauguration photo to that of Trump's, a devastating blow to the current president's ego.


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Orrin Hatch, @senorrinhatch
Sen. Orrin Hatch has hinted that this could be his final term in office. Whatever you feel about him, his Twitter account would be missed.

The senator from Utah can be rather droll in committee hearings, but his tweets are anything but that.

He also gave a shoutout to the president of the Salon Conservatives Club, which earns him points.  

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Cory Booker, @CoryBooker
Another possible candidate for the Democratic Party in the 2020 presidential election, Sen. Cory Booker is active on Twitter. Booker uses his social media better than anyone to connect with his constituents, making him a must-follow.

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Mazie Hirono, @maziehirono
Perhaps one of the toughest members of Congress, Sen. Mazie Hirono is currently fighting the Trump administration with stage-four cancer. Hirono's Twitter account documents her daily battles, providing inspiration for all of her followers.

timkaine-gateway   Tim Kaine, @timkaine The former Democratic nominee for vice president, Sen. Tim Kaine has not given up the fight for Democratic ideals. His Twitter account is an open book on his positions and shows where Democratic leadership is at on a given issue.

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Maxine Waters, @RepMaxineWaters
Rep. Maxine Waters may not be the most active politician on Twitter, but the congresswoman is a tour de force as of late whenever she drops a tweet on the Trump administration.

 

 


Taylor Link

Taylor Link is an assistant editor at Salon. You can find him on Twitter at @taylorlink_

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