THE Republican spokeswoman who created a social media storm over a Facebook post criticising Barack Obama’s daughters has resigned.
Elizabeth Lauten, the communications director for Republican Stephen Fincher, caused outrage after attacking Sasha and Malia Obama for their behaviour and dress during last week’s turkey pardoning event at the White House.
The slightly bored demeanour and the short skirts of the teenage girls drew her particular ire.
“Dear Sasha and Malia, I get your both in those awful teen years but you’re a part of the First Family. Try showing a little class. At least respect the part you play. Then again, your mother and father don’t respect their positions very much, or the nation for that matter, so I’m guessing you’re coming up a little short in the ‘good role model’ department,” Lauten wrote on Friday. She added: “Nevertheless, stretch yourself. Rise to the occasion. Act like being in the White House matters to you. Dress like you deserve respect, not a spot at a bar. And certainly don’t make faces during televised, public events.
The picture she posted along with her words showed 13-year-old Sasha gazing with what appears to be teenage disdain at her father while Malia, 16, stands with her arms crossed, looking down.
The post who used to manage new media for the Republican National Committee, immediately went viral and drew immediate fire. Her name became a hashtag on Twitter, and the online community vented about her scrutiny of the girls’ facial expressions, body language and demeanour. Her criticism of the way the girls dressed caused particular outrage.
Thousands of people tweeted the famous picture of George Bush’s daughter Jenna drunkenly falling over a friend at a party and yawning while sitting behind her father at an official occasion.
‘So Sasha and Malia Obama have no class? Two words: Jenna Bush. #ElizabethLauten,’ one tweet read.
Another said: ‘I have a feeling that Jenna Bush & sister are a little ticked off at #ElizabethLauten for bringing their past behaviour into the spotlight.’
Hours after the original post, Lauten deleted it. She also followed up with an apology for her rant, and set her Facebook profile to private.
“When I first posted on Facebook I reacted to an article and I quickly judged the two young ladies in a way that I would never have wanted to be judged myself as a teenager,” Lauten wrote later on Friday.
“After many hours of prayer, talking to my parents, and re-reading my words online I can see more clearly just how hurtful my words were.”
Lauten reportedly first told NBC News of her intended resignation in a phone call. Mr Fincher’s office declined to comment on personnel matters over the phone.
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