Heard on the Hill: Final Four Trash Talking

Posted March 28, 2011 at 6:24pm

Even the busiest politicians are taking to Twitter to cheer on their home-state teams in the Final Four of the NCAA Tournament.

Rep. Christopher Murphy (D) predicted the University of Connecticut Huskies’ advance more than a week before the team made the cut.

“If R Smith and J Lamb play like that over the next 3 games, we’re going to the Final Four!” he tweeted on March 17.

Another Connecticut Democrat, Rep. Jim Himes, was less enthusiastic. “Whole darn office wearing UConn gear. Except for the nervous-looking Chief of Staff who went to Syracuse. He’s got an orange tie. For now,” he tweeted.

Sen. Mark Warner (D), who frequently tweeted support for the George Mason University Patriots earlier in the tournament, later switched allegiances to support the Virginia Commonwealth University’s first-ever trip to the Final Four. House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (Va.) also got in on the VCU excitement, welcoming Rams coach Shaka Smart back to Richmond in person and tweeting a picture of the pair.

Indiana politicians on both sides of the aisle raved over Butler University’s second consecutive Final Four finish. Democratic Rep. André Carson, who represents the district where the school is located, tweeted his support, as did Sen. Dick Lugar (R) and Rep. Mike Pence (R). Newly elected Republican Sen. Dan Coats was the most vocal, even tweeting from the stands of one of Butler’s recent wins.

Kentucky politicians were quieter on Twitter, but GOP Sen. Rand Paul did congratulate the University of Kentucky: “Congratulations to the @UniversityofKY Wildcats! On to the Final Four!”

But it’s not just politicians from those four states who are excited about the tournament. Rep. John Culberson (R), who represents Houston, where the games will take place, is just as pumped.

“Although I wish there were still a Texas team in contention, I am thrilled the Final Four will be played in Houston,” he tells HOH.

“We couldn’t have asked for a better plot line with two ‘mid-majors’ playing for a shot at the title.”