President Barack Obama has finally got his own Twitter account, and within hours of sending out a single tweet, he has amassed more than half a million followers. If you’re wondering whether to believe it’s actually the president tweeting, don’t be concerned. The official White House Twitter account quickly sent out a message confirming that the new @POTUS handle does in fact belong to the commander-in-chief.
In a blog post on the subject, The White House said the new Twitter account “will serve as a new way for President Obama to engage directly with the American people, with tweets coming exclusively from him.” It continued, adding, “President Obama is committed to making his Administration the most open and participatory in history, and will give Americans a new venue to engage on the issues that matter most to them.”
So who does the president follow? At the time of writing, @POTUS has 65 Twitter users on his follow list, including Vice President Joe Biden and former presidents Bill Clinton and George H.W. Bush. He has also signed up for updates from top government agencies and major league sports teams, especially from his hometown of Chicago.
This is the first tweet send out by President Obama:
Hello, Twitter! It’s Barack. Really! Six years in, they’re finally giving me my own account.
— President Obama (@POTUS) May 18, 2015
Obama updated his bio to read, “Dad, husband, and 44th President of the United States.” The photo at the top of his Twitter account is a picture with his family crossing the Edmund Pettus Bridge taken back in March. From the image and the tone of the first tweet, it looks like this will be treated as a more personal account, something backed up by this reply:
It’s about time, @POTUS! –mo
— The First Lady (@FLOTUS) May 18, 2015
First Lady Michelle Obama responded to Barack’s tweet, saying, “It’s about time, @POTUS!-mo.” Obama has occasionally sent out tweets from her account personally, and signed them with -bo. The alternative @BarackObama Twitter account is run by Organizing for Action staff, and has 59.3 million followers.