White House spokesperson Sarah Huckabee Sanders says President Trump “has no problem” tending to the country’s needs in the “several hours a day” when he’s not tweeting and in fact on most days has plenty of spare time to read briefing papers. “I don’t know how many hours a day Barack Obama worked, but I doubt he worked harder or more effectively than President Trump during the many, many hours he’s not tweeting,” Sanders said at a briefing today.
The White House released a log that shows President Trump spends about three hours a day “on serious matters of critical importance to the United States,” with an additional two to three hours a day on what is described as “media analyses and assessments.”
When asked what media analyses and assessments refers to, Sanders said it’s making sure the stories on the president are not fake news. “As you can imagine, since so much of what passes as news today is fake, or even fraudulent, the president must spend a lot of time analyzing the news,” she said. “It’s sad.”
Sanders said many of the president’s tweets are the result of his efforts to ensure accuracy in the news coverage of him, and she pointed to his retweeting of a video in which he’s shown beating up CNN outside a wrestling ring as a good example of that. “Would the president rather spend his time ensuring the security of America?” Sanders asked. “Of course. But the amount of fake news on him unfortunately requires a lot of his attention.”
Even so, she added, the president “can easily run the country between tweets” because “he has a very good brain, a very smart brain.”
Trump’s ability to do both will be tested when an international crisis hits, which could be soon given North Korea’s recent successful launch of an intercontinental ballistic missile, said Dale Stevens, professor of media and the presidency at Columbia University. “Even if President Trump just tweets while he’s sitting on the toilet, that’s valuable time that he should be devoting to thinking about world affairs,” he said.
Bill Campbell, a former security advisor to President George W. Bush, defended Trump’s tweets by pointing out how well they’ve been weaponized by the president. “Look, Kim Jong-un has intercontinental ballistic missiles,” he said. “But Trump has his Android phone. It’s really no contest. If I were Kim Jong-un, I would be very, very worried.”
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Pointing to the “unbelievable job” he’s doing as president, Donald Trump today said he’s way ahead of his schedule for fixing everything that’s wrong with America. “When I was nominated by so many Americans last year, I said that I alone can fix our great country’s problems,” he said in a briefing with reporters. “I’m glad to say your president has delivered on his promises and you’ll be so surprised and so pleased at how much I’ll deliver on my promises in the weeks and months ahead.” Trump cited the success of free speech that was expressed in Charlottesville, Va., yesterday, in which a coalition of white nationalist groups clashed with anti-fascist demonstrators. “The free speech was so good,” he said of the rally, at which one protestor was killed when an alleged neo-Nazi supporter rammed his car into a crowd of people. Two officers were also killed when their police helicopter crashed. Virginia Governor Terrence McAuliffe declared a state of emergency. More.
The CNN executive who got body slammed by Donald Trump in the viral wrestling video says the fight didn’t end when the video ended; it ended after an additional round of fighting in which Trump didn’t fare quite so well. The executive, who asked to remain anonymous so he could speak frankly, said he hit Trump with a leapfrog body guillotine, in which he ran up to Trump from behind, jumped on his back, and hopped over his head, forcing Trump down onto the ground. “It was a dirty move but the President fights dirty,” said the executive. More.
President Donald Trump admitted today he never taped former FBI Director James Comey but he left open the possibility that he’s taping himself, although he acknowledged he’s just speculating. “I’m not saying I am taping myself but so many things are coming out of the White House, coming out of the Oval Office, that I think I could be taping myself,” he said. “I just think we’re going to be revealing some very interesting things in the months ahead. Very interesting things. You’ll be surprised, I can guarantee you that.” A White House press aide who spoke on condition of anonymity said the President’s remark “speaks for itself,” although it wasn’t clear if the President was admitting he was taping himself or whether he was being taped at his request or whether he was being taped not at his request but with his tacit agreement. “Or maybe the agreement isn’t tacit,” this aide said. “I think you ought to ask the President whether it’s tacit or not.” More.
President Donald Trump in a somber address to the nation called upon Americans to come together after Rep. Steve Scalise (R-La.), the third-ranking member in the House of Representatives, was shot by an anti-Republican man on Wednesday at a baseball park in Alexandria, Va. Several others, including congressional aides, were also shot. Scalise, who was shot by James Hodgkinson of Illinois, remains in critical condition. “I know there will be a temptation for Republicans to blame Democrats for helping to fuel a partisan atmosphere that might give rise to violence of this kind, but the time to stop the divisive rhetoric that has so long plagued our politics is now,” Trump said. “I know I have contributed to this environment. For that I express my regret. More.
The United Kingdom on Twitter today escalated a growing feud with the United States by promising to be just as insensitive and insulting when the U.S. is next hit by a terrorist attack as President Donald Trump was with the U.K. after its latest confrontation with extremist terror in London last week. “Unfortunately, it’s only a matter of time before you’re hit by a terror attack again,” the U.K. tweeted this morning. “We’ll feel bad for you, of course, but, sadly, we’ll have to be insensitive and insulting about your response. Sad!” The U.K. noted that no one is better at hurling insults than the British, so any country getting into a war of zingers with it will probably regret it. “Please don’t feel so stupid or insecure,” the U.K. tweeted about the U.S. losing an upcoming zinger fight with it. “It’s not your fault.” More.
White House spokesperson Sean Spicer said the Europeans are to blame for President Donald Trump’s decision to pull the United States out of the Paris climate accords because the French, Germans, and others think they’re better than everyone else. “You know, they walk around like they’re so great, so sophisticated,” Spicer said at his briefing today. “They have their fancy suits. They use their big, foreign words. They eat their expensive food with the small portions. Its nauseating.” Spicer said the Europeans look to the United States to pay for everything but behind the country’s back they look down on Americans. “You know, they say to us, ‘Protect us and buy our stuff. Buy our cars—which are better than yours, by the way—and watch our bicycle races and tennis matches. You guys with your stupid American football that’s not even football. You’re just so stupid.'” More.
Trump: ‘I’m Going to Preside Over the Greatest Collapse of American Civil Society We’ve Ever Seen, Believe Me’
President Donald Trump said today Americans will be more divided, more hostile to one another than the country has ever seen before, even more than during the Civil War, when the North and the South were pitted against one another. “We’re going to have the biggest, the greatest, the most tremendous breakdown in our shared civil culture than we’ve ever had before, I can guarantee you that,” Trunp said in remarks at the White House. “We’re seeing Americans fight each other on airplanes, insult each other in supermarket lines, and refuse to do business with one another. It will be the most fantastic breakdown in our country and it’s going to be so big.” Trump said America has long had a history of putting differences aside to work for the common good, but that path has put the country in its current state of mediocrity. More.
White House spokesperson Sean Spicer called a report that Donald Trump has drained all the prestige out of the presidency untrue. “There are plenty of leaders around the world who look up to the American presidency,” Spicer said today at his daily press briefing. “There’s the president of the Philippines, Rodrigo Duterte. There are some others. The point is, the American presidency is a powerful office that carries prestige no matter who occupies it.” Spicer was reacting to a report by Samuel Greene and Nadia Petrograv of Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government that the office of the president, which for generations has represented the most powerful leadership post in the world, has lost about 60 percent of its prestige since Donald Trump won election. More.