The reason Trump’s Twitter has some people worried
When President Donald Trump took to Twitter on Oct. 2, 2020, to announce that he and his wife, Melania Trump, had tested positive for COVID-19, the public was left with plenty of questions. Along with being curious about the Trumps’ quarantine period, and how the situation might impact his campaign, there were also questions about how they were keeping their son, Barron, safe. One thing that they weren’t wondering about was why the President had used social media to share the news. That’s because the politician is famous for his frequent use of Twitter.
In 2017, he tweeted, “My use of social media is not Presidential — it’s MODERN DAY PRESIDENTIAL.” And according to The New York Times, following “the morning of Inauguration Day” that same year, what came next “was a barrage of personal attacks, outrage, and boasting, in a near-constant stream of more than 11,000 tweets over 33 months.” In fact, “[a]t the beginning of his presidency, Mr. Trump tweeted about nine times per day,” and by November 2019, “President Trump’s tweets [were] spill[ing] out at triple the rate he set in 2017.”
That dedication to the platform is why, following the U.S. leader’s COVID-19 diagnosis, there was something strange about his Twitter account that had many people worried.
Donald Trump stopped tweeting (for a few hours)
Following Donald Trump’s tweet on Oct. 2, 2020, revealing his COVID-19 diagnosis, those who follow him on Twitter noticed something that was incredibly unusual: no more tweets. All in all, a total of around 17 hours passed without another social media message from the U.S. President.
While this would likely mean that most people are simply taking some time to feel better after testing positive for an illness, the situation involving the President sparked some serious speculation. “The fact that Trump hasn’t tweeted all day means something. I wouldn’t be surprised if he’s sicker than they’re saying,” one person tweeted, with many others sharing similar sentiments.
On the other hand, The Washington Post noted that for the President, “coronavirus quarantine could mean more time for tweeting.” Social media researcher and Clemson University professor Darren Linvill agreed, telling the Post, “I bet that once he has his feet under him, assuming his case is relatively mild, he’s going to be tweeting more than ever.” That may be true, because, indeed, he was back at it as soon as possible.
President Trump's eventual tweet was a video
While accusations of lying and suspicious posts began to pop up while President Donald Trump failed to tweet following his COVID-19 announcement, at 6:31 pm on Oct. 2, 2020, he sent out another social media message. “I want to thank everybody for the tremendous support,” the President said in a recording that was a short 18 seconds long. Adding that he was “going to Walter Reed Hospital,” he continued by saying, “I think I’m doing very well. But we’re going to make sure that things work out.”
He also gave an update about his wife, Melania, saying that “the First Lady is doing very well,” then again thanked those watching for their support, saying he’ll “never forget it.”
The President’s followers were quick to react, sending responses that ranged from encouragement and well-wishes to distrust and, er, not-so-well-wishes. However, no one seemed to be surprised that he had returned to Twitter sooner rather than later.
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