'ILU': Congressman Tweets to Bikini Model from SOTU

'ILU': Congressman Tweets to Bikini Model from SOTU

Not everyone was thoroughly entranced by President Obama’s State of the Union address on Tuesday night.

Congressman Steve Cohen (D-TN), for instance, felt compelled to send out this tweet to a 24 year-old Texas bikini model from his phone at 10:26 PM as he sat in the audience at the House of Representatives chamber where President Obama spoke:



Steve Cohen (D) @RepCohen

@victoria_brinkpleased u r watching .ilu

“ILU” (or “ilu” in lower case) is often used as Twitter shorthand for “I love you.”

Minutes earlier, the Twitter user @victoria_brink had sent Congressman Cohen this public tweet:

12 Feb Victoria Brink ‏@victoria_brink @RepCohen just saw you on tv!  

The 63 year-old Cohen, a bachelor, apparently had second thoughts about sending out such a friendly public tweet to a woman 39 years his junior who has been published in professional bikini modeling shoots. Three minutes after he sent the tweet out, Cohen deleted it. But thanks to the watchful eyes of Congressional Twitter account trackers at Politiwoops, several screen shots of the flirtatious exchange were captured.

But Congressman Cohen was back at it Wednesday morning. At 7:40 AM, he sent out this tweet to Ms. Brink:


Steve Cohen (D) @RepCohen

@victoria_brink nice to know you were watchin SOTU(state of the union).Happy Valentines beautiful girl. ilu

Once more, that tweet was deleted fifteen minutes later.

As the screen shots of both tweets were released later on Wednesday, Congressman Cohen was soon compared to Anthony Weiner, the former Democratic Congressman who publicly tweeted and quickly deleted a link that contained imagery far more embarrassing than Cohen’s ill-advised words.

Cohen’s hometown newspaper, the Memphis Commercial Appeal, was skeptical of Cohen’s press secretary Michael Pagan’s explanation: “I asked [Congressman Cohen] this morning what was the scoop and he was like ‘well, she’s the daughter of a longtime friend and I consider her like family.'” Pagan was unable to identify the name of the family friend who is the parent of Ms. Brink, and a search of Federal Election Commission records shows no one with the last name of Brink who has donated to Congressman Cohen’s election campaigns.

Mr. Pagan told the Commercial Appeal on Wednesday that Congressman Cohen would not be available to comment on his embarrassing tweets.