Seven things we learned about Conor Lamb's challenger from reading his tweets | News | Pittsburgh | Pittsburgh City Paper

Seven things we learned about Conor Lamb's challenger from reading his tweets

click to enlarge Seven things we learned about Conor Lamb's challenger from reading his tweets
Screenshot from campaign website
U.S. Rep. Conor Lamb (D-Mount Lebanon) has his first Republican 2020 challenger, and, boy, is he ever active on social media.

In a press release announcing his campaign, Scott Timko, Air Force veteran and small business owner, said, “[Lamb’s] priorities are all wrong for western Pennsylvania working families who want solutions from Washington. The people of western Pennsylvania deserve a lion in Congress to fight for them, not a Lamb.”

Timko, a North Hills resident, is challenging Lamb for the suburban Pittsburgh seat (Pennsylvania U.S. House District 17) that includes Beaver County, the northern and western Allegheny County suburbs, and Mount Lebanon.

The campaign website shows that Timko supports — among other things — longer prison sentences for drug dealers, defunding so-called “sanctuary cities,” strong immigration enforcement and Second Amendment rights. But his presence on Twitter, where he’s been posting regularly for more than four months, shows even more of his platform.

Here’s what City Paper found:

Timko is against equal rights for transgender Americans.

On the “Issues” page of his website, Timko lists “Keeping Men Out of Women's Athletics and Their Bathrooms” among his priorities. Unsurprisingly, that transmisogynistic rhetoric carries over to Twitter, where he shared a satirical article from the Babylon Bee about basketball star LeBron James joining the WNBA. In another post, he asked if he could “identify” as a different age, a joke he apparently thought was so good that he tagged conservative commentator Ben Shapiro in the Tweet.

In Allegheny County, trans residents are protected under the county’s non-discrimination act which prohibits housing, employment, and public accommodation discrimination based on gender identity.

He claimed Lamb believes in “open borders.”

Earlier this summer, the anti-immigrant group Federation of American Immigration Reform (FAIR) attacked Lamb on Twitter, asking, “Why did @RepConorLamb vote to give amnesty to MILLIONS of illegal aliens at the height of a massive border crisis?”

Though it didn’t offer context, the tweet referred to Lamb’s vote for the Dream Act, which would give DACA recipients a path to citizenship — a vote Timko suggested, without evidence, was motivated by Lamb’s belief in “open borders without restriction.” Timko also shared the tweet from FAIR, which has been deemed a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center.

According to a June 2018 Gallup poll, 83 percent of Americans support providing a path to citizenship to DACA-recipients, including 75 percent of Republicans.

The earth is not flat.

Timko, an ex-Air Force pilot, shared a photo from a plane cockpit on Easter Sunday, wishing his followers a happy Easter and reminding them that the #earthisnotflat. Duh!

He opposes a higher minimum wage on the grounds that it hurts small business.

Last month, Timko wrote, “Mandating a wage doesn’t magically give me more income to dispense.” And while some small business owners can struggle to keep profits at the same level when the minimum wage is hiked, their employees struggle too when the minimum wage is kept stagnant despite an increasingly high cost of living. Cities like Seattle have passed $15 minimum wage bills with minimal to no consequences to the restaurant industry and other low-wage industries.

The earth is round.

This one is from Timko’s Instagram, which he started just a few weeks ago with a first post explaining to his followers that he’s running for Congress. But in his second post, he shared frustrations about a plane passenger who apparently tried to convince Timko on a recent flight that the earth is a flat, spinning disk. Timko will NOT suffer these fools.

Timko is serious about boycotting Nike.

After the early-July news that Nike had pulled a new sneaker featuring the Revolutionary War-era Betsy Ross flag after private criticism from former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick, some conservatives vowed to blacklist the company. (The incident ended up giving Nike stock a boost.) The #boycottnike hashtag has slowed to a trickle on Twitter, but Timko made it clear last week that he, at least, is still on the boycott train. Sharing a picture of Nike’s new Steelers running shoe, Timko tweeted, “These look awesome - but I do my best to buy from companies that are proud Americans.”

BTW, Timko reminds us the earth is still round.

You know it.