Trump keeps tweeting about news he sees on TV

February 11, 2017
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On Friday, President Trump tweeted a quote from an article that was, for him, an odd news source: the legal news blog Lawfare. Citing the article, without any context or a link, he called this week’s court decision blocking his travel ban “disgraceful.”

Was Trump reading Lawfare? The answer seems to be no — he was watching TV.

Just minutes before Trump’s tweet, several journalists quickly realized, MSNBC’s Morning Joe aired the quote on-screen. (For the record, Lawfare editor Benjamin Wittes soon suggested Trump was taking his words out of context.)

Trump has a well-documented love of cable news, but it’s only in recent weeks that his habit of tweeting about what he sees is coming into focus.

For no immediately noticeable reason, Trump tweeted about sending “the feds” to Chicago to fight crime in the city.

Just before, this graphic appeared on Fox News’ The O’Reilly Factor:

The list goes on. A Fox News segment about Chelsea Manning apparently inspired Trump to call her an “ungrateful traitor.”

And a segment on CNN led to Trump voicing support for an extremely questionable project on “voter fraud.”

Sending seemingly off-hand tweets is hardly new behavior for Trump, but the link to TV has been either little-noticed before now or more pronounced since he took office. But as he keeps tweeting — and, reportedly, keeps watching cable news in the White House — it’s not unreasonable to expect even more, similar incidents soon.



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