Rep. Raul Labrador (R-Idaho) gave spokesman Phil Hardy the axe this week, after Hardy mistakenly posted an awkward tweet to the congressman's account during the Super Bowl.
"Me likey Broke Girls," the tweet read. Posted shortly after an ad for the CBS show "2 Broke Girls" -- in which actresses Kat Dennings and Beth Behrs dance in risque clothing on and around what appears to be a stripper pole -- it remained on the social network for only 14 seconds before being deleted. But it was preserved through a Sunlight Foundation service that captures deleted tweets from politicians, where it caught the attention of HuffPost's Laura Bassett.
While Labrador's office had already announced that Hardy was responsible for the tweet and apologized for it, Jake Ball, district director for the Mormon Republican, told the Idaho Statesman that the congressman had felt the need to take further action.
“That’s Raul’s call,” Ball said of Hardy's firing, which took place on Monday. “I did not make the decision.”
Twitter has a way of creating problems for politicians and their staffers. Former Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-N.Y.) set the bar for devastating Twitter engagement in 2011, when he tweeted out lewd photos of himself from his account. He was eventually forced to resign after the misaddressed tweet led to the discovery that he'd corresponded inappropriately with numerous women over the Internet.
Tweets from congressional staffers have also led to Capitol Hill controversy, though usually the offending messages don't make it onto their bosses' accounts. Three staffers for Rep. Rick Larsen (D-Wash.) were fired in 2011 after a blog turned up a series of tweets that showed the trio had been carrying out a plan to spend the final month of the legislative session in "a state of perpetual debauchery."