White House counsellor Kellyanne Conway has defended President Donald Trump’s Twitter habits in an interview with The New York Times.
“He needs to tweet like we need to eat,” said Conway.
The New York Times embarked on a study of more than 11,000 tweets by Donald Trump - a President who has used social media like no other - scrutinising the accounts he follows and interviewing administration officials, lawmakers, Twitter executives and ordinary Americans “caught up” in his tweets.
According to the paper’s story, published on 2 November, in more than half of them, Trump used the platform to lambaste someone or something.
Trump has “attacked” at least 630 people and things in 5,889 tweets since taking office, according to the Times.
Other tweets, claims the outlet, referred to “conspiracy theories”, including 40 tweets about voter fraud and a “rigged” electoral system.
Early in Trump’s presidency, top aides discussed asking Twitter to impose a 15-minute delay on his account, similar to the five-second naughty-word system used by television networks, according to the publication.
However, a former White House official is cited as saying they abandoned the idea since the president worried it would make his tweets irrelevant.
Kellyanne Conway’s defence of Donald Trump’s Twitter habits sparked a prompt response from social media users, with some applauding his use of the platform:
Love his tweets, partly because it drives the left crazy. Maga2020— nottoday (@JasonKellogg8) November 2, 2019
Thank you President Trump for all your tweets informing the American people of the truth and exposing the news media for their lies and fabricated narratives!— Teddy (@teddytwothinks) November 3, 2019
I cannot wait until Trump is not president anymore. Mainly because I want to see if the main stream media is as nit picky about every social media post as they are with Trumps. Unfortunately, this is the way that the majority of people get their news in today’s society...— Adam Hodges (@adamphodges) November 2, 2019
He needs to tweet like we need to breathe!— Colorado BAP (@BapColorado) November 2, 2019
we ask that the president tweets it's the only way we get the truth, Media and democrats have not told the truth for 10 years now all we get is on going lies, Sad when the times was a respected newspaper but not any more and this is why— Louie George (@LouieGe51467728) November 3, 2019
Thank President Trump for tweeting you are the only one giving us the truth . Don’t worry about Kelly Ann has to say she doesn’t know what day it is!!!!— Margie Gilbert (@MargieGilbertLA) November 2, 2019
Other twitter users took a different stance, pointing out that Trump’s tweeting was a form of “addiction”:
Can someone be addicted to twitter?— James Blynt (@benjred) November 2, 2019
Addiction says anything to her?— Kenneth Boman (@KennethBBoman) November 2, 2019
Time to diet!— emiparm (@emmasnonna) November 2, 2019
The problem with Trump "needed to tweet like he needs to eat" is that they produce the same thing, mountains of it.— US has the DTs (@DShasthe) November 2, 2019
KellyAnne's doling it out. pic.twitter.com/h59IXpB97s
Kellyanne Conway: Trump 'needs to tweet like we need to eat'!YES RIGHTLY SO, BUT HE HAS VIOLATED ALL OF THE TWEETING RULES!!— Dick Colligan (@navyofficer01) November 2, 2019
US President Donald Trump has consistently touted his Twitter account’s influence on mainstream media.
Speaking to conservative social media personalities at a White House conference, he said:
“Boom. I press it, and, within two seconds, 'We have breaking news,”' the Times noted.
However, the president’s Twitter habits have also brought attention to the social media platform’s policies, with some accusing Trump of having violated the platform’s rules.
Twitter announced it took “newsworthiness” into account when deciding whether to remove a post that violated its policies.
In September 2017, Trump tweeted that North Korea “won’t be around much longer!” as tensions escalated, sparking fears of a possible military conflict between Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un.
North Korea’s foreign minister responded at the time by saying Trump’s post was a “clear declaration of war”.
Twitter at the time stated it had to hold all accounts, including Trump’s, to the “same rules,” but that “among the considerations is 'newsworthiness' and 'whether a Tweet is of public interest.'”