ABC News' Mary Bruce (@marykbruce) reports:
It’s Twitter day at the White House. The Twitterer in Chief, who just started tweeting himself a few weeks ago, will host the first presidential Twitter town hall at the White House this afternoon.
While President Obama would like to focus on jobs and the economy, the topics for today’s event are up to Twitter, which will be picking the questions based on the trends and “hot topics” in the questions submitted to #AskObama.
“The actual questions that are asked are in the hands of Twitter to decide and we’re looking forward to hearing a wide variety of viewpoints,” White House Director of New Media Macon Phillips said Tuesday.
Thousands of questions, posed in Twitter’s 140-character limit, have poured in ranging from Afghanistan to the deficit to legalizing marijuana. The president, however, will not be tweeting his responses. Instead, he will offer answers aloud while condensed versions of his responses will be tweeted at @townhall.
Today's digital town hall comes as the president seeks to enthuse young voters and reengage their support for his 2012 campaign. The White House, which took part in a similar event with Facebook in April, has made clear that social media will play an important role in its communication going forward.
The president isn’t the only one in the White House embracing Twitter. Vice President Job Biden’s office joined the site earlier this week. @VP already has close to 18,000 followers, still a long way to go till he reaches @BarackObama, which has well over 8 million followers.
Perhaps the president can offer Biden some pointers during their private weekly luncheon today.
Also on the president's schedule for today, a morning meeting with Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner in the Oval Office.
Asked about rumors yesterday that Geithner is readying to leave his position, White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said he was a "highly valued" member of the President's economic team and that "he will be here for the foreseeable future."
In the afternoon, Obama will also meet privately with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.