Missouri Democrat Sen. Claire McCaskill was the latest to treat an incendiary post by a fake congressman as a representation of the Republican Party as a whole.
A parody account claiming to be operated by Georgia’s 15th district representative, Rep. Steve Smith, is an obvious fake considering the state has but 14 congressional districts. Beyond that obvious clue, several articles have been published outing the account as a hoax.
Nevertheless, McCaskill reacted harshly to a response by the account to one of her recent Twitter posts, which featured a photo of a birthday cake she purchased for her brother and brother-in-law.
“They’re gay?” the parody account’s operator wrote. “Bet you wouldn’t post this if they weren’t.”
She shot back, calling the reaction “dumb” before several users chimed in to explain she had been duped. It was her subsequent explanation, however, that earned McCaskill the most backlash.
“The joke’s not on you,” one critic retorted. “You are the joke.”