Comedian Becomes ‘Mitt Romney’s Twitter Nemesis’

By Peter V. Milo
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Screen shot of Rob Delaney's Twitter page. (credit: Twitter)

Screen shot of Rob Delaney’s Twitter page. (credit: Twitter)

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WASHINGTON (CBSDC) — Comedian Rob Delaney has made his name on Twitter. Last year, he did a series of tweets that depicted President Obama as depraved, but Delaney has a new target this year — Mitt Romney.

On any given tweet Delaney paints Romney as vain, out of touch, or a flip-flopper. He even gets into the absurd.

“@MittRomney WHY have u remained silent on Obama’s proposed beef piano legislation?? Pianos should NOT be made of meat. #Coward #tcot”

With just over 500,000 followers compared to Romney’s 800,000, Delaney is causing serious damage to the Republican presidential candidate’s Twitter reputation. The majority of Romney mentions on Twitter came from Delaney’s account as users re-tweeted his posts.

Delaney told Business Week that Romney is his favorite target because “more than any other candidate in my lifetime, he just wants to be president.”

Delaney has been such a thorn in Romney’s Twitter side that Business Week dubbed him as “Mitt Romney’s Twitter Nemesis.”

Mathematically, Romney should be dominating the conversation over Delaney. Romney has 300,000 more followers than the standup comic, but looks can be deceiving.

Reports have surfaced that a large percentage Romney’s followers might have been bought. According to The Register, Romney’s account gained around 117,000 followers in one day.

Researchers from Barracuda Labs looked into it and determined that “most of these recent followers of Romney are not from a general Twitter population but most likely from a paid Twitter follower service.”

The Register reports that followers could be bought for as little as $2 for 1,000 followers.

There is no evidence, though, that the Romney campaign bought the followers in the same article by The Register.

“It is possible for anyone to buy followers for other Twitter users … there is not a feasible way to confirm who is responsible (for the fake followers),” Barracuda Labs told The Register.

Delaney, however, is picking up more fame, followers, and now has a comic strip inspired by his Twitter antics. Josh Mecouch, 26, an artist from Portland, Ore., has been illustrating Delaney’s tweets in the comic “Mitt & Rob.” The artwork is reminiscent of children’s books, historical political cartoons, and Gary Larson’s “Farside.”

Mecouch told CBSDC that he was inspired by Delaney’s tweets because Delaney has “created a hilarious one-sided relationship with Mitt Romney.”

There was also something funny about the contrasts between Romney and Delaney that Mecouch noticed.

“A clean-shaven Romney in his political uniform and a full-bearded Delaney in his signature edition green Speedo is very funny to me so I wanted to draw it,” Mecouch said.

Delaney isn’t working together with Mecouch with the comic but he does approve of it, even tweeting a few of the comics to his followers.

It may be of some relief to Romney’s social media team that the estimated lifespan for a tweet is about an hour. However, Delaney’s tweets will live on in the historical record, because every public tweet is archived by the Library of Congress.

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