Top Twitter Talk

NYT ‘s @NickKristof 'Maybe the ACA could also cover compassion transplants for the Ayn Rand folks?'

Oct. 2, 2013: A man looks over the Affordable Care Act (commonly known as Obamacare) signup page on the website in New York in this photo illustration.

Oct. 2, 2013: A man looks over the Affordable Care Act (commonly known as Obamacare) signup page on the website in New York in this photo illustration.  (Reuters)

Politicians, operatives, White House officials, members of Congress—along with some snark artists—are debating, attacking, defending and kibitzing around the clock on Twitter. It’s a nonstop forum that is helping shape the political conversation.  In this daily feature, @laurenashburn picks some of the best – and worst – political tweets you may have missed.

NYT columnist and two-time Pulitzer prize winner Nicholas Kristof’s column Sunday ”This Is Why We Need Obamacare"  didn’t exactly have a healing effect on the debate. He had a message for Republicans protesting ObamaCare.

“You’re right that there are appalling problems with the website, but they will be fixed. Likewise, you’re right that President Obama misled voters when he said that everyone could keep their insurance plan because that’s now manifestly not true (although they will be able to get new and better plans, sometimes for less money).”

Then he asked for empathy for the nearly 50 million Americans without insurance.

Fuhgeddabout about empathy, his plea sparked an outpouring of anger prompting Kristof to take to Twitter to vent.

Nicholas Kristof ‏@NickKristof

Maybe the ACA could also cover compassion transplants for the Ayn Rand folks? Might help solve many social problems.

Responses to his tweet? Along these lines:

Larry Kunz ‏@larry_kunz

@NickKristof Lack of compassion is a pre-existing condition. Fortunately, ACA will cover that.


Michelle Malkin, founder of (and a Fox News Contributor) has come down with pneumonia yet still finds the energy to channel The Who: 

Michelle Malkin ‏@michellemalkin

Ppl try to put us down

Tell us we can shop around #MyHealthPlanDied & it's no joke

O "fixed" what wasn't broke

(Talkin bout @MyCancellation)

Guess this generation even sings in 140 characters.


John Edwards, Mark Sanford, Anthony Weiner, Newt Gingrich, Eliot Spitzer, John Ensign, Larry Craig, the bad boy pol list goes on and on (and on.) Fixing these messy muddles is how PR specialists afford houses in the Hamptons.

Turns out there’s a phrase for the insincere “I’m sorry” act. My former colleague, Daily Beast reporter Michelle Cottle, tweets from the Ethics and Public Policy Center’s Faith Angle series in Miami - hello suntan, lucky duck.  Pols , I’m shocked,  often use and abuse forgiveness in the public square.

Michelle Cottle ‏@mcottle

“at conference talk on "spinning sorrow"--what most scandal-soaked pols do instead of expressing genuine remorse. #faithangle13

CNN Belief Blog co-editor Daniel Burke, whose Twitter bio says, “Looking for the gold tooth in God’s crooked smile,” tweets from recommended approach to screwing up:

Daniel Burke ‏@BurkeCNN

“Duke theologian L. Gregory Jones: Best moral manual is the Benedictine Rules bc monks accountable to each other for life #FaithAngle13


Take that Twitter! The Old Gray Lady disses the seven year-old social media phenom that fuels this column.

In an interview with Israel’s Haaretz, NYT CEO Mark Thompson makes it pretty clear who’s top dog. He defended the decline of the newspaper industry saying it had stabilized.  "And essentially, we're going to go on printing the newspapers as long as people want us to," he said, "and the indications are that that will be for many more years to come."

Public Editor Margaret Sullivan tweets the headline:

Margaret Sullivan ‏@Sulliview

New York Times CEO to Haaretz: Twitter's a snack, we're a meal …

Thompson elaborates: “It’s a little series of little mouthfuls rather than the complete meal, but many people come to New York Times stories from Twitter and they seem to read the entire story," Thompson said. "One of the dangers of journalism is if people only want a sentence, then a 1,000-word article is going to be wasted, and will never get read, if you only read a single sentence."

But guarantee this ain’t stopping Times journos from tweeting their hearts out.

If you’d like to recommend your favorite political Twitter picks, email Lauren Ashburn or send her a tweet @laurenashburn with the hashtag #TwitterTalk.

Lauren Ashburn joined the network in 2013 and currently serves as a Washington-based contributor for FOX News Channel (FNC). On MediaBuzz with Howard Kurtz, Ashburn contributes commentary on the state of the news media shaping current events, their role in politics, cultures, business, and tech. Click here for more information on Lauren Ashburn