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Sen. Chris Murphy just used ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ in a floor speech because ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) likes memes. How do we know? Because this is a poster that the junior senator from Connecticut used in a Thursday afternoon floor speech about a Republican lawsuit against the Affordable Care Act.
“This is a pretty good summary of what the Republicans’ plan is to respond to King v. Burwell,” Murphy said.
The King case, which the Supreme Court is expected to decide this summer, involves a challenge to the Obama administration’s authority to provide insurance subsidies to people who live in states that didn’t set up their own healthcare exchanges, which the ACA recommended. If the challengers win, subsidies will stop flowing to people on the federal healthcare exchange, which could result in millions of people losing their insurance.
In response, Murphy said, Republicans in Congress offered little more than “a shrug of the shoulders.”
In case you need Murphy’s poster translated fully into ASCII art, it’s this:
Reactions to the congressional shruggie were mixed.
the shruggie is in the congressional record, we did it! time to close the internet.
— Becca Laurie, PI (@imbeccable) May 21, 2015
guys do not reward the politician using memes
— Philip Bump (@pbump) May 21, 2015
the shruggie has made it you guys
we did it
or like ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
— Peter Labuza (@labuzamovies) May 21, 2015
The shruggie was a big hit among journalists, of course, particularly those congressional reporters sitting around wishing they had a big story to cover. (This reporter includes himself in that group.)
Idea: A congressional filibuster delivered solely in emoji
— Brian Fung (@b_fung) May 21, 2015
man it must be fuckin easy to do comms on the hill, just make them go out with a big sign saying BAE ON FLEEK and fifty journalists tweet it
— libby watson (@libbycwatson) May 21, 2015
Darth, meanwhile, just went on doing his thing.
Perhaps Murphy was excited to learn that the shruggie was among the 38 new emoji that the Unicode Consortium will introduce next year.
Screengrab via C-SPAN
Eric Geller is a politics reporter who focuses on cybersecurity, surveillance, encryption, and privacy. A former staff writer at the Daily Dot, Geller joined Politico in June 2016, where he's focused on policymaking at the White House, the Justice Department, the State Department, and the Commerce Department.