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COVID infection tweets are clearly scripted

Keean Bexte

April 7, 2022

It’s become blatantly obvious that politicians’ tweets alerting the public to their COVID-positive status are scripted.

Yesterday, Minister of Innovation Francois-Philippe Champagne tweeted that he’d tested positive for COVID-19 and was subsequently called out for clearly copying and pasting BC Premier John Horgan’s COVID-positive tweet.

“This morning I tested positive for COVID-19. Fortunately, my symptoms are mild and that is thanks to being fully vaccinated. I’m following public health guidelines, isolating and working from home,” he wrote.

Two days earlier, Horgan tweeted, “This morning I tested positive for COVID-19. Fortunately, my symptoms are mild and that is thanks to being fully vaccinated. I’m following public health guidance, isolating and working from home until my symptoms resolve.”

What are the chances that two politicians on opposite sides of the country, who grew up speaking completely different first languages, ended up with the exact same word choice, with only modest alteration at the end?

My guess is the chances are low. Very low.

They also both managed to make the same punctuation error, missing the comma that belongs after “This morning.” Amazing.

PM Justin Trudeau, of course, took the opportunity to offer words of encouragement.

“Sorry to hear, my friend. Get well soon,” he told Horgan.

“Rest up, my friend — and get well soon,” he told Champagne.

Trudeau also sent out the usual COVID-positive Tweet in late January, conveniently only days after the Freedom Convoy arrived in Ottawa. However, he was arguably more original.

Again, though, it’s the same message. ‘I tested positive and must take some time off from in-person work. But I’m feeling fine! I only have mild symptoms. And that’s because I’m vaccinated and boosted. I’m vaccinated with a vaccine that doesn’t prevent infection. Don’t forget to get your boosters!’

A month ago, Alberta NDP leader Rachel Notley practically tweeted out the same.

It isn’t like this is new, either. Many Twitter users have been documenting the use of the monotonous script and messaging throughout the pandemic — a script that has miraculously made it to the keyboard of nearly every single politician on the planet.

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