An official State Department Twitter account was inappropriately used to promote an anti-Trump politician, a State Department official told the Washington Free Beacon on Friday.
The State Department’s Bureau of Arms Control, Verification, and Compliance (AVC), retweeted this week a message by Joe Walsh, a one-time Republican firebrand who is now known for his fierce opposition to former president Donald Trump. Walsh tweeted about the recall of three San Francisco school board members over their prioritization of progressive measures in the name of racial justice and their support for draconian coronavirus restrictions on the city’s public schools.
"Democrats, please pay attention to what happened in San Francisco yesterday," Walsh wrote in a tweet that was boosted by the State Department’s AVC bureau. Walsh and others appeared to be indicating that Democrats who support pandemic school closures could be at risk ahead of midterm elections later this year.
The AVC bureau’s retweet of this message raised eyebrows among congressional observers who questioned why a federal agency focused on arms control would wade into such a fraught political debate.
Asked about the matter, a State Department spokesman told the Free Beacon that the AVC account was used by an unauthorized individual and that the retweet was later deleted once officials realized what had happened.
"There was an unauthorized use of an official State Department Twitter account. When alerted, the managers of the account deleted the unauthorized retweet and changed the password," the official said.
One congressional source who spoke to the Free Beacon after seeing the retweet expressed shock over the matter. "There’s a rumor circulating around Foggy Bottom that Secretary Blinken is considering changing the name of the ‘AVC’ Bureau to ‘DNC,’" the source said, referring to the Democratic National Committee.