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Dan Patrick’s Twitter Typo Was Heard ‘Round The World

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State senator Dan Patrick, former talk radio host and potential Lt. Governor nominee, found himself something of an Internet celebrity yesterday. If by “celebrity,” you mean “punchline,” which in this case, we do—quite literally. 

That is to say, his tweet in response to the gay marriage ruling handed down yesterday by a federal court that found Texas’ ban to be unconstitutional turned the candidate and state senator into today’s living example of “read that tweet twice before you send it.” 

The tweet in question was a bold declaration that, “activist judges” be damned, there’s only one definition of marriage, and it’s—“between a man and a man,” Patrick’s official Twitter account sent out into the ether of the Internet, where it was immediately and roundly mocked. 

It’s perhaps a bit gauche to pick on someone for what is pretty clearly a typo, but Patrick’s critics would presumably also consider it gauche for him to argue that, regardless of how our courts interpret the Constitution, he’s the arbiter of what marriage is and is not. At the very least, we can all agree that everybody feels passionately about this and Patrick’s ill-timed typographical error was the sort of embarrassing blunder that was certain to make him a figure of fun among everyone on the opposite side of the issue from him.

The mockery began with a collection of other folks on Twitter, then proceeded to spread throughout the snarkier corners of the Internet. Gawker and Slate highlighted the tweet, by the end of the day, it had traveled far and wide enough that it gave the state senator’s campaign for Lt. Governor an unexpectedly high-profile airing on Conan with Conan O’Brien, who joked that “A Texas state senator who’s opposed to gay marriage accidentally tweeted ‘marriage is between a man and a man.’ The senator said it was a simple mistake, like that time he joined Grindr instead of Christian Mingle.”

Of course, Patrick’s actual position on gay marriage is obviously not at all in doubt, and it’s hard to imagine that the tweet would hurt him among the people who will be voting in that primary: if anything, the brief national attention focused on the candidate and how much he opposes gay marriage, slippery Twitter thumbs to the contrary, might help remind voters of his passion on this issue in a race that’s seen candidates compete to earn the distinction of “furthest to the right.” 

Regardless Dan Patrick later clarified that it was an accident by a staffer and not some act of resistance by a secret Twitter saboteur who infiltrated his campaign. Patrick tried to make light of the mishap in a follow-up tweet with a job posting, complete with contact info. 

In any case: Gay marriage is unconstitutional in Texas pending appeal, Dan Patrick thinks that’s a mistake, and people who give their tweets a once-over before hitting “send” are in demand. That’s quite an eventful day for a state senator in the off-season. 

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  • TC Langford

    I think you might have a typo in your last paragraph. Maybe you meant the BAN on gay marriage is unconstitutional.

    • dave in texas

      Unconstitutional according to the Texas constitution is the reference.
      It used to just be illegal, but the “threat” of gay marriage caused the GOP legislators in Texas to pass a referendum to put it on the ballot as a constitutional amendment so it would be both illegal AND unconstitutional. The smarter ones among them had to know it would never pass constitutional muster, but, hey, there was a base to rile up and an election to win.

  • Texas Publius

    Senator Goeb’s mistweet was intentional and the gullible, politically non-clever mainstream media took the bait hook, line, and sinker like an idiot fish–giving Senator Goeb unprecedented media attention with R primary voters on election eve, without paying one dime. This is especially helpful because Senator Goeb’s campaign account is empty.

    • ClaudeHenrySmoot

      Silly. If anything more than a mistake, likely a Freudian slip.

  • Meadia66

    Dan Patrick is the real joke here, just watch his insane tv ads.

  • ML

    So he doesn’t run his own twitter account and throws an intern under the bus it’s contents. Fine fellow

    • wessexmom

      He’s an arrogant jackass.