In response to her exclusion from media chyrons, supporters of Democratic presidential candidate Tulsi Gabbard have taken to social media to push #TulsiMediaBlackout, echoing the supporters of fellow outsider candidates Bernie Sanders and Andrew Yang, who regularly drive #BernieBlackout and #YangMediaBlackout, respectively.
The recent hashtag push for Gabbard appears to be at least partly the work of Sathvik Enturi, the social media director of Students for Tulsi — a grassroots organization of students working to elect the Hawaii Representative. Enturi noted on Twitter that Gabbard was excluded from an MSNBC chyron showing the candidates who have qualified for the December debate — Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, Pete Buttigieg, Kamala Harris, Amy Klobuchar — as well as those that have met one requirement, Tom Steyer and Andrew Yang.
As Enturi noted, Gabbard has also met one debate requirement — the required donors — and needs four percent or higher in just one more DNC-approved poll to take the December debate stage.
The Students for Tulsi Twitter account also recently addressed what they believe is an effort to minimize the 38-year-old’s campaign.
“We, collectively, need to acknowledge that there is a #TulsiMediaBlackout. Whether the MSM is outright ignoring Tulsi and our campaign, or are smearing us as being Russian assets/bots, it is an overt effort to discredit Tulsi, her candidacy, and this movement.”
— Sathvik Enturi (@sathvikenturi) December 1, 2019
The hashtag appears to be getting support from Yang’s supporters, who have raised their own voices many times in the past over the media treatment Yang has received.
“I’ll make as much noise for #TulsiGabbard as i [sic] did for my guy #AndrewYang. This has nothing to do with opinions pro/cons Tulsi’s platform,” one user wrote.
“They stuck up for us when @AndrewYang was unfairly left off graphics and now CNN did it to @TulsiGabbard. This is wrong,” said another, referring to a recent CNN chart that excluded Gabbard.
Gabbard previously left the Democratic National Committee (DNC) for what she believed was unfair treatment of Sanders in favor of Hillary Clinton. Following Clinton’s recent accusations of Gabbard being a Russian asset, the congresswoman suggested in an op-ed for The Wall Street Journal that attacks from Clinton and her “powerful media and political network” all stem back to revenge for Gabbard’s decision to leave the DNC.
Gabbard also used her piece to blast Clinton’s “foreign-policy catastrophes” and suggested that such an approach is seen in some of the current Democratic presidential candidates, who she claims continue to advocate for the regime change wars she believes are causing “suffering and destruction” and undermining the security of America.