“It used to be in the old days before this, you’d write a letter and you’d say, ‘this letter is really bad,’ you put it on your desk and you go back tomorrow and you say, ‘oh, I’m glad I didn’t send it,’” Trump told Barstool Sports’ founder Dave Portnoy.
“But we don’t do that with Twitter. We put it out instantaneously, we feel great, and then you start getting phone calls, ‘Did you really say this?’ I say, ‘What’s wrong with that?’ And you find a lot of things,” continued the president, who is often the subject of criticism over his use of his Twitter account. “You know what I find? It’s not the tweets, it’s the retweets that get you in trouble.”
Trump went on to say he doesn’t always look closely at the tweets that he shares from his Twitter account, which has 84 million followers.
He had similarly said that some of his tweets create problems for the White House in an interview last year.
Trump also told Portnoy he believed Twitter to be a powerful messaging tool, explaining that he uses it to cut against “fake news” — a phrase he often uses in deriding critical press coverage of his administration.
(PART 2) – @realDonaldTrump @WhiteHouse pic.twitter.com/O8G9JPwGR3
— Dave Portnoy (@stoolpresidente) July 24, 2020
The president’s interview with Barstool Sports was taped Thursday, marking Opening Day for the abbreviated 2020 Major League Baseball season, and was published online Friday.
Trump has a long track record of tweeting or retweeting controversial messages, including recently sharing a tweet of a video showing an apparent Trump supporter yelling “white power” in response to protesters. Trump later deleted the tweet, and the White House said the president had not heard the racist phrase when he shared it.
He also came under fire for a tweet he sent in late May criticizing protesters in Minneapolis and warning that “when the looting starts, the shooting starts” — repeating a phrase that was used by a Miami police chief cracking down on protests during the Civil Rights era. Trump later denied knowing the racially charged history of the phrase.
In June, Twitter said it labeled a Trump tweet with an official advisory “for violating our policy against abusive behavior, specifically, the presence of a threat of harm against an identifiable group.”
And earlier this month, Trump retweeted a game show host who alleged that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and others were lying about the novel coronavirus in order to hurt his reelection chances.
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