TikToker shares story about influencer roundtable with Sherrod Brown and Cory Booker

@freddiesroommate/TikTok Sherrod Brown Cory Booker

‘Give me your phone’: TikToker says staffers asked him to delete video confronting Senators over Gaza ceasefire

'I know in my heart that I am probably not going to get an opportunity like this...'


Marlon Ettinger


Posted on Mar 18, 2024   Updated on Mar 19, 2024, 8:45 am CDT

A TikToker named Justin Jordan, who goes by the handle @freddiesroomate, claims he was asked to delete a video which showed him confronting two senators about a ceasefire in Gaza.

The video, shared to Jordan’s nearly 200,000 followers yesterday, details his experience during an influencer round table with Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) and Sen. Cory Booker (D-New Jersey) on Sunday. The meeting was intended to cover the ongoing attempts by Congress to ban TikTok.

But after twenty minutes of the Senators sharing their record in office—and answering pre-selected questions from other influencers on non-related topics—Jordan got the impression that the meeting was more about boosting the Senators than discussing TikTok.

“I’m like ‘OK, that’s great, um, interesting,’” Justin said after Brown shared his record voting for gay marriage. “Though OK, and in my head I’m thinking ‘OK, there’s fifteen minutes left for questions, and two questions took about maybe like, ten minutes each to answer from the both of them. I don’t think they’re gonna ask my question.’” 

When the woman running the event called on somebody else to ask a question, Justin said he knew he had to break in.

“I know in my heart that I am probably not going to get an opportunity like this, to sit down in front of them to ask important questions that my community, especially the TikTok community, talks about,” Jordan explained. “And that’s when I decided to ask about Gaza.”

“Senators, before you leave, do you support a ceasefire in Gaza?” Jordan asked while recording with his phone.


Replying to @Justin are you there senator? Is me, Freddie’s roommate #ohio #election #tiktokban #corybooker #sherrodbrown #senate #congress

♬ original sound – Justin

Brown had a short answer: “No.”

Booker had a longer one, Jordan said, explaining that he supported peace in the region but would only support a bilateral ceasefire where Hamas lays down its weapons too. Brown piped up that he’d support that too, but that he didn’t think Hamas would ever do that.

Jordan says he was then asked by Awo Eni, Brown’s Digital Content Director, and another staffer to delete the video.

“Give me your phone,” the second staffer asked Jordan, saying that he’d violated their policy.

“’What policy? I did not sign anything. I’m going to leave,’” Jordan said. “And that’s when he follows me out, asking for me to delete the footage. ‘I am not going to delete the footage of me asking questions about a ceasefire in Gaza.'”

According to a TikTok Jordan posted before the event, Eni had sent him a DM inviting him to the event. Followup emails with Brown’s Deputy Digital Content Director Maggie Boyle, which Jordan shared with the Daily Dot, hashed out questions he wanted to submit, as well as guidelines for recording the event.

“You may film and take photos at any other time other than the Q&A portion,” Boyle wrote in one email.

Staffers for Brown’s campaign didn’t respond to questions about the recording policy.

“Although I disagree with their positions, I do appreciate the firm answers,” Jordan told the Daily Dot. “My main objective was not to get them to agree with me but to hear where they stood so I could report it back to my audience.”

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*First Published: Mar 18, 2024, 2:08 pm CDT