Sean Spicer: Donald Trump's Tweets "Considered Official Statements By POTUS"


One Washington consultant whose clients work closely with the administration said the tweets feed into a sense that the White House is losing its way.

The president's spokespeople often argue that his tweets should not be taken seriously, but Spicer gave reporters a different assessment: "The president is the president of the United States, so they're considered official statements by the president of the United States", he said.

Trump, facing an escalating Russian Federation investigation and a floundering legislative agenda, has unleashed his frustration through Twitter in recent days, berating the mayor of London after his city was the site of a terrorist attack, castigating the American courts as "slow and political", calling on Democrats to expedite confirmations even as his pace of appointments lags, and going after his own Justice Department for adjusting an executive order that required his approval and received it.

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"The Justice Dept. should have stayed with the original Travel Ban, not the watered down, politically correct version they submitted to S.C.", Trump tweeted Monday, ignoring the fact that he oversees the department and signed the second version of the ban.

"At least 7 dead and 48 wounded in terror attack and Mayor of London says there is 'no reason to be alarmed!'" Trump continued in a string of early Sunday morning tweets. In a week that top officials hoped he could focus on his infrastructure plan, Trump instead made the narrative his Twitter feud with the London mayor and an apparent shift in policy toward Qatar, also first aired on the social media site.

"His tweets are the policy", Cuomo insisted. Trump misquoted Sadiq Khan, who had told citizens not long after the attack they should not be alarmed if they saw an increased presence of armed police in the area. The host reminded her that Trump prefers to communicate through Twitter. Trump repeated the sentiment twice Monday. Trump's tweets either matter or they don't.

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More than half of respondents, meanwhile, said they believe Trump's tweets hurt national security - 51 percent; the United States' standing in the world - 53 percent; and his presidency - 57 percent. "They hate that I can get the honest and unfiltered message out", he tweeted.

"Sorry folks", he said in another tweet, "but if I would have relied on the Fake News of CNN, NBC, ABC, CBS, washpost or nytimes, I would have had ZERO chance winning WH (the White House)". It's the same argument we hear from people spreading false information on Facebook - it's just social media, so what's the big deal?

Jack Goldsmith worked in the Justice Department during former President George W. Bush's first term and presented his case on Twitter via 17 separate tweets that spelled out why he feels Trump is undermining his own presidency. "I think it's frankly refreshing".

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