NORTHWEST ASIAN WEEKLY
Rep. Ted Lieu (D-CA) has emerged as a fierce leader in the Democratic Party during the first eight weeks of President Donald Trump’s term. In a blistering statement released on March 23, Lieu said we may have an “illegitimate president” and called for “a total and complete shutdown of any agenda item being pushed by the Trump Administration.”
Lieu has made a virtual art form out of trolling the Tweeter in Chief. After Trump bragged about letting Obamacare “explode,” Lieu took to Trump’s favorite medium to blast what he called a treasonous act, “‘President’ Donald Trump: You are truly an evil man. Your job is to help Americans. Not intentionally try to destroy their lives.”
Since the beginning of the year, followers of Lieu’s personal Twitter account (@tedlieu) have exploded, going from fewer than 10,000 to more than 139,000. The official @reptedlieu account is managed by his staff and is more restrained.
Lieu’s @tedlieu acount often tweets in the style and language of Trump, with capital letters, exclamation points, and parentheses. “More evidence #Trumpcare is a disaster,” said one Lieu tweet. “American Medical Association calls it critically flawed. Sad (or sick) bill!”
The second-term congressman from Torrance, Calif. has been particularly hard on Trump ever since it was confirmed that the FBI is investigating potential collusion between members of Trump’s campaign staff and the Russian government. That led to Lieu’s “illegitimate president” tweet. Part of Lieu’s personal Twitter profile reads, “I don’t take orders from Vladimir Putin.”
Lieu’s family moved from Taiwan to the United States when he was 3. Lieu studied computer science at Stanford and he got his law degree from Georgetown Law School. He’s a colonel in the U.S. Air Force Reserves and a former military prosecutor.
Lieu’s wife of 15 years, Betty, told the Washington Post, “One of the reasons I married him was his sense of humor.”
The couple has two sons, ages 11 and 13. “[Ted] was raised to be an obedient, dutiful Chinese immigrant son. He does what he’s supposed to do. He is very clean-cut with the perfect record, the perfect résumé. When he’s angry, he’s usually controlled.”
News releases from Lieu’s congressional office sometimes place an asterisk next to Trump’s name, questioning his legitimacy, noting his loss of the popular vote and “Vladimir Putin ordering a multifaceted and brazen Russian influence and cyber hacking campaign with the goals of undermining faith in the U.S. democratic process.”
“Michelle Obama had that beautiful line, ‘When they go low, we go high,’” Lieu told the Los Angeles Times. “I thought about it a lot. But I also thought, ‘We lost the election.’ My view now is that when they go low, we fight back.”