The display of enthusiasm for favored political candidates can take on many forms from a simple bumper sticker to a yard sign proclaiming loyalty to the nominee of choice, but this election cycle has seen young voters take to less traditional methods to express their support of the surprisingly strong run by Senator Bernie Sanders (VT-Independent).

The unconventional candidate – a 74-year-old self-described Democratic-Socialist who voluntarily caucuses with Senate Democrats out of necessity – campaigns on a left-of-progressive, outlier platform despite being a Washington D.C. fixture since 1990, and although he is a dark horse in the race to win the nomination from Hillary Clinton, he is attracting the support of a new group of voters.

Now, two of those supporters who put their passion for Sanders’ candidacy on the so-called “hook-up” app, Tinder, have found themselves banned from the online dating connection after sending campaign messages to “matches” provided by the app.

The women, one from Iowa and the other from New Jersey, each received notice from Tinder that their accounts were locked after potential matches reported that they had been using the app to deluge men with political messages urging support for Sanders.

Robyn Gedrich, 23, sent messages to 60 people each day for two weeks in attempts to convince them to support Sanders over former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

“I started it about two weeks ago when we got that snowstorm in New Jersey. There’s so many lazy millennials that would never read about Bernie unless someone sent it right to them [on Tinder].”

Quoting Sanders’ slogan, Gedrich texted, “Do you feel “the Bern? Please text WORK to 82623 for me. Thanks.”

The recipient would then receive updates directly from the Sanders campaign, along with a link to sign up as a volunteer.

As a result, Gedrich said she has been locked out of her Tinder account since logging off on Thursday.

The other Tinder user, Iowan Haley Lent, 22, purchased a premium account to change their location in order to be able to reach matches in New Hampshire prior to the upcoming February 9th primary in that state.

Lent, who is married, said she connected with 50 to 100 people urging undecided voters to go to the polls on primary day to support Sanders.

The women reported that their efforts received “mixed” responses from the Tinder users she contacted, “Some people would ask what is this for, and I would kind of explain. Some of them would unmatch me or report me as a bot [a bot or robot account is a scam profile used to send spam].”

Other Tinder users countered with “Trump2016,” indicating their minds were already made up about their choice for president, although Gedrich said some responded, “Why bother? We’re all doomed.”

A spokeswoman for Tinder had not commented on the action, but did refer reporters to its “Terms of Use,” which prohibits users from posting, uploading or displaying content that involves the transmission of “junk mail,” “chain letters,” or “spamming, phising or trolling,” adding that if a user violates the policy, Tinder may “investigate, suspend and/or terminate” an account.



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