Nearly 600 Russia-Linked Accounts Tweeted About the Health Law
On the March 23 anniversary of the Affordable Care Act becoming law, Democrats attacked Republicans for trying to sabotage the health law and praised the embattled legislation.
So did Russian trolls.
“8 years ago today, President Obama signed the Affordable Care Act into law. Millions of Americans have gained access to health care. Thank you, Mr. President!” said a tweet linked to the Internet Research Agency, a Russian company engaged in an online influence campaign that typically seeks to pit one side against the other on controversial issues.
A newly identified group of nearly 10,000 tweets shows that while Russian trolls often focus on such hot-button issues as Hillary Clinton’s email or athletes kneeling during the national anthem, they also target substantive and divisive policy areas like health care.
Nearly 600 IRA-linked accounts posted to Twitter about the ACA and health policy from 2014 through this past May, with the most prolific ones tweeting hundreds of times, the new data show. One account, called TEN_GOP, rocketed from fewer than 1,000 followers to more than 138,000 in two years, sending 60 tweets that potentially reached followers more than four million times.
Researchers at Clemson University provided The Wall Street Journal with the set of about 9,800 tweets involving health policy and the ACA that the IRA posted over that period. An analysis by the Journal found that 80% of the tweets had conservative-leaning political messages, often disparaging the health law.
Tweeting by the IRA accounts peaked in spring 2017 and again that summer, when congressional Republicans mounted failed efforts to repeal the health law.
The IRA, based in St. Petersburg, seeks to use divisions over the health law to mobilize voters, pressure Congress and target specific lawmakers, the tweets suggest. The organization is seen by U.S. intelligence officials as a sophisticated, Kremlin-backed group that ran a surreptitious operation to influence the 2016 elections with a budget in the tens of millions of dollars.
The IRA is the focus of several federal and congressional investigations as it becomes increasingly clear how Russian propagandists have used social media to stoke tensions in the U.S.
Re: Russian Trolls Tweeted 10K Times About Obamacare
Originally Posted by NumberSix
I heard somewhere that I’m not sure if it’s credible that during the primary the Russians were trying to help Bernie. Is there actually any truth to that or is that just spin?
from the crooked hillary funded discredited dossier. carter page phd, known russian spy, conceived the idea of releasing the batch of stolen emails during the dnc to sway bernie bros.
"Trump’s associates reported that the aim of leaking DNC emails to Wikileaks during the Democratic Convention had been to swing supporters of Bernie Sanders away from Hillary Clinton and across to Trump. These voters were perceived as activists and anti-status quo and anti-establishment and in that regard sharing many features with the Trump campaign, including visceral dislike of Hillary Clinton."
from mueller's indictment (organization 1 is wikileaks... allegedly ) :