The original 2018 quote by Waters advised her supporters to publically confront Trump administration officials, in protest of the child separation policy at the southern border.
But a Friday tweet from an unknown individual, who’s twitter handle suggests they are a troll specifically targeting the New York governor, directed the calls for harassment towards Cuomo.
“If you see anybody from the Cuomo Administration in a restaurant, in a department store, at a gasoline station, you get out and you create a crowd. And you push back on them. And you tell them they’re not welcome anymore, anywhere,” the tweet read, signing the message from “Maxine CuomoWatch.”
But instead of passing off the tweet as a troll driving controversy, political officials responded angrily to the message, garnering more attention to the aggressive post.
“The terrifying events of the last month have shown us more clearly than ever that words have consequences,” New York City Council Speaker Corey Johnson said on Twitter, referencing the attack on the U.S. Capitol earlier this month. “This sort of targeting and incitement is simply wrong, and totally unacceptable.”
Lis Smith, a former senior adviser for Pete Buttigieg during his presidential run, responded in frustration to the tweet by the non-verified account, saying it was “Way way way over the line. Especially in light of what happened at the Capitol on Jan 6.”
And New York State Senator Jamaal Bailey wrote, “This is more than tonedeaf, especially considering what’s happened in recent days. This is unacceptable and ridiculous. Read the room.”
But as lawmakers and public officials condemned the tweet, they also drew more attention to the post, allowing the troll to successfully perpetuate the discord.
The message was retweeted more than 500 times, with an additional 300 quote tweets with split reviews, some noting the hypocrisy in the message originally written by a Democratic congresswoman while others condemned the calls to violence.
None of the politicians who condemned the tweet noted the reference to Water’s 2018 comments.