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‘Modern day presidential’ Trump defends use of Twitter

© Mandel Ngan, AFP file picture | US President Donald Trump joined Twitter in 2009 and has posted more than 35,200 tweets since

Text by FRANCE 24

Latest update : 2017-07-02

US President Donald Trump, who has made it a habit of using Twitter to circumvent traditional media, on Saturday defended his use of social media, describing himself as being “modern day presidential”.

"My use of social media is not Presidential - it's MODERN DAY PRESIDENTIAL. Make America Great Again," Trump said on Twitter following several days of controversial tweets targeting numerous US news organisations and two television show hosts.

“The FAKE & FRAUDULENT NEWS MEDIA is working hard to convince Republicans and others I should not use social media – but remember, I won the 2016 election with interviews, speeches and social media. I had to beat #FakeNews, and did. We will continue to WIN!”

Since he took office on January 20, Trump has made Twitter his platform of choice to communicate with the US public, after repeatedly accusing the traditional press of spreading so-called “fake news” about both him and his presidency. The media, however, has attacked the US leader for using Twitter as a way to avoid scrutiny.

But Trump’s tweets – which add up to more than 35,200 since he joined the social media platform in 2009 – has also landed him in hot water on occasion after launching personal attacks on both politicians and media personalities alike.

Renewed attacks

On Thursday, the US leader fired off another volley in his escalating feud with the US media, aiming a Twitter tirade at CNN, NBC and two morning news presenters, Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski.

"I heard poorly rated @Morning_Joe speaks badly of me (don't watch anymore).

"Then how come low I.Q. Crazy Mika, along with Psycho Joe came to Mar-a-Lago 3 nights in a row around New Year's Eve, and insisted on joining me. She was bleeding badly from a face-lift. I said no!," he wrote.

The comments sparked a major backlash, as well as condemnation from within Trump's own Republican Party.

The TV hosts responded on Friday with an opinion piece in The Washington Post titled "Donald Trump is not well," questioning his "unmoored behavior" and fitness to serve.

'Fighting fire with fire'

Trump has also targeted CNN, which is now a frequent punching bag for the president.

"I am extremely pleased to see that @CNN has finally been exposed as #FakeNews and garbage journalism. It's about time!" he tweeted, referring to an article that the cable news channel retracted, that claimed Congress was investigating links between Trump's administration and a Russian investment fund.

Three CNN journalists resigned over the article, which was posted on the network's website on June 22 before being withdrawn the next day.

"I am thinking about changing the name #FakeNews CNN to #FraudNewsCNN!" Trump posted.

He also suggested in a tweet that veteran ex-Fox journalist Greta Van Susteren, who left MSNBC this week, "was let go by her out of control bosses at @NBC & @Comcast because she refused to go along w/ 'Trump hate!'"

Trump's deputy spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders said that Trump's attacks on Brzezinski, Scarborough and other media were part of his natural instinct to "fight fire with fire."

(FRANCE 24 with AFP)

Date created : 2017-07-02

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