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Miami-Dade Voter Reflects On Going Viral After Joking About Instagram On Election Day

Screenshot of tweet by the Miami Herald's Lautaro Grinspan. He spoke with Miami-Dade voter Alex Garcia.
Screenshot of tweet by the Miami Herald's Lautaro Grinspan. He spoke with Miami-Dade voter Alex Garcia.

A reporter’s tweet about a funny motivation for voting becomes an online hit.

Many voters expect to be asked about their motivations for going to the polls. They typically bring up the candidates or issues about health care or the economy.

Talking with a reporter, Alex Garcia, 28, joked about Instagram.

“I just want my Instagram to be about me again, and how good I look:” read the tweet by Lautaro Grinspan, a journalist with the Miami Herald and El Nuevo Herald.

The tweet went viral. BuzzFeed and the Daily Mail picked up the story.

“I tweeted that little blurb thinking I would inject a touch of humor into what was a pretty tense evening,” Grinspan said.

Garcia, who’s from Kendall, said he didn’t anticipate his exchange would gain this much attention.

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“I think a lot of people are really over this kind of tension and anxiety we feel on social media,” he told WLRN. “It’s crazy because I’m seeing friends and even parents of friends fighting with people on the internet. It’s Instagram. It’s supposed to be fun.”

Garcia, a fashion brands recruiter and a realtor, was planning to cast a vote-by-mail ballot. He was ready to vote for President Trump given his Cuban-American background.

“The Republican Party is definitely where Cubans tend to go towards, so I’ve always grown up that way,” he said.

Garcia waited until the last minute to return his mail-in ballot so he decided to vote in person on Election Day. When he arrived at his polling place, the West Kendall Regional Library, he changed his mind and voted for former Vice President Joe Biden.

“It’s difficult as a progressive person that’s actually left Miami and seen different sides of the world,” Garcia said. “As a gay man, it’s conflicting. I have friends in the drag scene. That’s why I switched my vote at the end for all my friends that seem to be really affected by Trump and the things he says.”

Garcia said he doesn’t usually share his political views, so the fact that he’s become associated with politics online is hilarious to him.

“It says a lot about society,” he said. “You would think the dumbest person on earth said that statement. There’s a lot of people that are really fascinated with being popular on Instagram. That’s why I made that joke and why it had to do with politics.”

The story developed beyond the initial hype of the election. BuzzFeed published a story with another person named Alex Garcia who took credit for the Instagram line. Grinspan alerted the reporter and a correction was issued.

“It remains a bit of an enigma with this other guy,” Grinspan said.

Garcia said he contacted his so-called doppelgänger who blocked him on Instagram.

“I blame my mom for that because Alex Garcia is probably the most common name I’ve ever heard,” he said.

It is — at least in Miami.

Alexander Gonzalez produces the afternoon newscasts airing during All Things Considered. He enjoys helping tell the South Florida story through audio and digital platforms. Alex is interested in a little of everything from business to culture to politics.
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