June 17th, 2009
01:31 PM ET
13 years ago

Hoekstra compares Iranian protests to GOP effort

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/06/17/art.hoekstra0617.gi.jpg caption="Rep. Pete Hoekstra compared the use of Twitter in Iran to a Republican Web effort last year."]WASHINGTON (CNN) - The flood of Twitter activity emerging from the street protests in Iran is bringing back some fond memories for Republican congressman Pete Hoekstra of Michigan.

"Iranian twitter activity similar to what we did in House last year when Republicans were shut down in the House," Hoekstra tweeted from his BlackBerry on Wednesday, referencing how House Republicans used the Web to get their message out after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi adjourned the House before an energy vote last August.

But just how "similar" was that effort to the passionate protests in the streets of Iran that followed last week's disputed election?

Barely a minute passed before Twitter users objected to Hoekstra's assertion. One user quickly tweeted back: "Except the Democrats didn't come after you with clubs and guns, did they?"

Hoekstra's office said the congressman was not making a direct comparison between the two situations and was simply highlighting the value that new technology can play in communicating with supporters.

“Congressman Hoekstra did not compare the ongoing violence in Iran to when Democrats shut down the House chamber during the energy debate last summer," said spokesman Dave Yonkman. "The two situations do share the similarity of government leadership attempting to limit debate and deliberation, and the ability of new technologies to bypass their efforts and allow for direct communication. That’s the only point that he was trying to make."

This isn't Hoekstra's first Twitter controversy. Back in February, the ranking member of the House Intelligence Committee tweeted details of a congressional trip to Baghdad. Congressional Quarterly called that a security breach, but the congressman's office said the trip details were not classified and that the the tweets posed no risk.

Story updated with Hoekstra response at 2:40 p.m. ET

Filed under: Uncategorized
soundoff (105 Responses)
  1. cjr

    He's a republican – they don't' understand anything!

    June 17, 2009 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  2. USMC - Mike


    The GoP: The Dinosaur Party; ready for extinciton

    June 17, 2009 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  3. Jason Eckelman

    They are not at all similar – by any stretch of the imagination. The people in Iran are fighting for the sanctity of representative rule. The republicans were throwing an extended tantrum.

    June 17, 2009 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  4. IsaacTheForcedCatholic

    Iran's protest does remind me of Rethuglicans... When they cheated the election process many, many, many times! Everyone remembers Bush's parade when he stole the 2000 elections? Everyone was throwing eggs at his limo when driving to the capitol.

    June 17, 2009 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  5. John in Binghamton

    Not really surprised. This not the first time Hoekstra has said something stupid.

    The GOP just wants to make dems look bad at any cost and get back in power.

    A good idea should be a good idea no matter what party came up with it. If everyone knows you are going to say no to every dem proposal no matter what then what good is it talking to you. You are not reasonable.

    June 17, 2009 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  6. Moderate Democrat

    "The ranking member of the House Intelligence Committee"

    Hoekstra proves, beyond the shadow of a doubt, that there is NO requirement of 'intelligence" for this position. Republicans lack any and all forms of intelligence.

    They don't need a teleprompter, their idiocy is ingrained in them. Here's their substitute for a teleprompter: "Tax cuts for the rich, No to Progress, White People in charge, the other 95% of america should die, yes to torture and illegal wars"

    June 17, 2009 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  7. NeverScared

    I can't begin to explain just how laughable this flip flopping gasbag's argument is. LOL LOL LOL LOL!!!!!!!!!!

    June 17, 2009 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  8. Dmitri Lowry

    Yes, Hoekstra. Truly the poor, downtrodden Republicans can be compared to the desperate and freedom-starved people of Iran who are being murdered in the streets for wanting to be free. Is there any wonder that this party is making itself extinct?

    June 17, 2009 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  9. Heather

    This is funny...These situations are not similar whatsoever!

    June 17, 2009 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  10. Bob

    I've always thought the GOP wants the U.S. to be like Iran. This just confirms it. The GOP wants a theocracy.....like Iran. Just Jesus.....not Allah.

    Want Proof? Who are there heroes? Sarah Palin (oh yeah hypocrite), Ted Haggert (oh right, he is a gay meth queen now), Charlie Crist (ooops, gay), Larry Craig (oh no...another one!), Mark Foley (oops...there we go again)....

    Oh well...

    June 17, 2009 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  11. LacrosseMom

    He IS KIDDING RIGHT???????????????????????????????????

    What NERVE does this man have to compare the Iranians protesting an election that was clearly rigged to their campaign of HATE & OBSTRUCTION against President Obama!

    I suppose GOPers will say anything to get publicity!

    June 17, 2009 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  12. GOP = 21st century dodo

    The GOP is more like the Iranian regime than the protesters. The GOP was felled by a grass roots movement which emerged through new technology, which the GOP does not understand.

    June 17, 2009 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  13. LibertyQueen

    The only similarity between Iranian President Ahmadinejad and the GOP...Geezers of Propaganda...is that they are crooked, repressive and violent towards people, millions of them, who do not share their distorted fascistic world view.

    June 17, 2009 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  14. Clint

    This is the same guy that "twittered" on where he was in Iraq making the job of guarding him that much harder. He's a dumbnut and shouldn't be allowed to cross the street by himself.

    June 17, 2009 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  15. James M. Holmes

    I'd say the GOP is more like the Taliban – religious nuts who are trying to take down America by any means!

    June 17, 2009 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  16. ethan

    This man is in CONGRESS. An embarassment to all Americans.

    June 17, 2009 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  17. Elliebee

    Yeah, keep dreaming buddy. The GOP is once again in la-la land.

    June 17, 2009 02:46 pm at 2:46 pm |
  18. stag

    Comparing the repubs or dems and their spineless speaches to the Iranians who are willing to die is an insult to Iran and thier populace.

    Americans have become pawns. Many years ago we had a populace as brave as that in Iran. Sadly, ours has died off.

    June 17, 2009 02:48 pm at 2:48 pm |
  19. Simmy

    Rep. Hoekstra......Some things are better left unsaid......

    June 17, 2009 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  20. David

    Let's hope the Iranian people have better luck with it. Oh for you republicans the @ sign is used in twitter, it's not just for email! :O)

    June 17, 2009 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  21. 2pacolypse Now

    The GOP just don't learn do they. They will take a situation which doesn't even apply to theirs and spin it to try to make it theirs until some sensible human being reminds them and asks them to, STOP LYING!!! 8 years was enough.

    June 17, 2009 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  22. AndrewDoD

    Moron. Even comparing "Government leadership attempting to limit debate" is still a far cry from the two situations.

    Am I the only one who wishes we could go back to the "Ignorance is Bliss" days where we didn't actually know what our elected officials were thinking? My face is permanently red from all the face-palms lately.

    June 17, 2009 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  23. Claudia in Houson

    Hoekstra is just another GOP old man who is no more than a tweety bird, just making noise to appear to be up on technology. Just ignore him, he's too old and the youth are driving him crazy with all this new technology.

    June 17, 2009 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  24. JT

    Baloney. Big difference. The GOP has made itself obsolete and people are flocking away from it in droves.

    June 17, 2009 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  25. Paul from Phoenix

    Why has CNN not posted ANYTHING about Obama firing Gerald Walpin? This is the same thing people are saying Bush should be in jail for with the firing of prosecutors.

    However, CNN has nothing on this. Go to the Sacramento Bee to get the story. It could be the beginning of a very nasty story.

    Bad journalism CNN.

    June 17, 2009 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
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