Politics

Trump: I’m Not Ever Going to Stop Tweeting!

Only the 'Fake News Media' want him to stop using social media, the president posted on Tuesday

New White House chief of staff John Kelly appears to have a broad mandate to instill discipline in the West Wing, but President Donald Trump made clear Tuesday that it won’t include banning him from Twitter.

The president’s Twitter habits drive critics to distraction and sometimes give his own supporters agita. Some commentators have practically begged Trump to put away his smartphone. But Trump tweeted Tuesday that this will not happen: “Only the Fake News Media and Trump enemies want me to stop using Social Media (110 million people). Only way for me to get the truth out!”

Rich Noyes, director of research at the Media Research Center, said Twitter is a powerful platform for the president.

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“Twitter has been a net positive for him,” he told LifeZette. “It certainly was a source of a lot of buzz for him during the campaign.”

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From the moment he began campaigning in 2015 — and years before as a private citizen — Trump has employed a shoot-from-the-hip style online. During the campaign, it contrasted sharply with 2016 Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton. One chain of emails WikiLeaks released detailed a six-hour process involving 10 advisers editing, debating and shaping a single tweet responding to a tweet about Cuba from Republican candidate Marco Rubio.

Noyes said he doubts Trump ever would tolerate such a bureaucratic process. But he added that the president could benefit from using Twitter as part of a coordinated communications strategy.

“The medium is fine,” he said. “I think even the tone is fine … It just has to be part of a an overall strategic plan.”

Outside of social media, all signs are that Kelly is pushing hard on the reset button. One of his first acts was to shove out Communications Director Anthony Scaramucci, whose scorched-earth conduct claimed the jobs of Kelly’s predecessor, Reince Priebus, Press Secretary Sean Spicer, and Spicer press aide Michael Short.

The former homeland security secretary and retired Marine Corps general also reportedly has demanded that all White House staffers report to him and clear policy proposals and personnel recommendations with him.

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“General Kelly has the full authority to operate within the White House, and all staff will report to him,” new press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders told reporters at Monday’s daily briefing.

Rep. Leonard Lance (R-N.J.) told CNN on Tuesday that it has been a challenging time for the White House.

“However, I do think that General Kelly will be excellent as chief of staff, so long as everyone in the White House can report to him,” he said. “I think there can be only one chief of staff, and that should be General Kelly.”

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