Trump has gone on a tweeting frenzy since the Mueller report, but data shows that interactions with his Twitter account have plunged.
Americans Are Tuning Out Trump’s Tweets
On MSNBC’s Morning Joe, Steve Rattner built on reporting by Axios to show that Trump’s tweeting has accelerated, but his impact is diminishing:
First of all, we know he has been our tweeter-in-chief. What maybe not everyone appreciates is the extent which tweeting his increased. He’s gone from six tweets a day during his first six months in office to 13 tweets a day in the most recent six months in office. Just in this last month here, he hit an all-time high of 642 tweets and re-tweets.
The evidence shows that the interactions with his tweets; in other words, the number of times someone re-tweets a tweet or likes a tweet, has been dropping. Back here at the beginning of his administration, it was about 55 times out of 1,000, people would do this. Doesn’t sound like a lot, but it is a lot. You can see the trend all the way down here. He’s gone from 55 times a thousand down to 16 times a thousand most recently. His tweets are having a bit less impact.
The other fun fact that we should take a look at is what happened since the Mueller report. That accounts for a lot of what’s going on. If you look before the Mueller report, you can see that he tweeted 61 times, no collusion. Then he went to — 56 times. Then he went to 61 times, no collusion, in the two months before. For 12 months, 56 times, no collusion. For two months, 61 times, no collusion. On obstruction, it is even more dramatic. He’d only tweeted no obstruction 11 times during the previous year. Since the Mueller report, he went to 34 times. Once every other day, no obstruction. Every day for 60 days, no collusion. Every other day for 60 days, no obstruction.
Trump’s Tweets Are Constant Political Background Noise
Trump doesn’t understand the concept of scarcity. His constant and endless drumbeat of tweets is political noise pollution. They are always there, rarely newsworthy from a policy point of view, and endless. It doesn’t stop. Trump went from blaming “censorship” and Twitter for his audience dropping to tweeting frantically every single day in a bid to get attention. It is not a coincidence that once the press stopped treating Trump’s tweets as newsworthy, interest in his account dropped.
Why Trump Tweets
The drop in his Twitter account impact would be bad news for Trump if he were tweeting as part of a coherent political strategy. Trump’s tweets are pathological. He can’t stop himself. Trump doesn’t tweet for political gain. He tweets because he has no impulse control and has to let his feelings out. Trump’s Twitter account isn’t a political platform. It’s a dear diary, where the president goes to cry into his pillow about everything that upsets him.
Trump’s tweets are worth monitoring as a way of tracking his emotional decline as president.
Trump has lost his steam on Twitter, but his account is real-time documentation of the mental state of a corrupt president who senses that time is running out.
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Mr. Easley is the founder/managing editor and Senior White House and Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association