Politics

National Archives Wants To Save Deleted Trump Tweets

| by Michael Doherty

The National Archives has reportedly advised the White House to archive all of President Donald Trump's tweets, including the ones he deletes.

"[The National Archives and Records Administration] has advised the White House that it should capture and preserve all tweets that the president posts in the course of his official duties, including those that are subsequently deleted, as presidential records," wrote Archivist of the United States David Ferriero to Democratic Sens. Claire McCaskill of Missouri and Tom Carper of Delaware, according to ABC News, after the two senators expressed concern that by deleting his tweets, Trump may have violated the Presidential Records Act of 1978.

Trump has been known to post tweets with misspellings and delete them, such as a tweet on the day of his inauguration, where he said that he was "honered [sic] to serve you, the great American people, as your 45th President of the United States." The tweet was later deleted and replaced with the correct spelling of the word.

Ferriero added that officials with the White House have confirmed that they "are, in fact" archiving the president's tweets, but it is not clear what the method is for preserving them. The previous Obama administration reportedly used an automated system to archive Barack Obama's tweets, according to The Associated Press.

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The Presidential Records Act puts the responsibility of managing archives with the president, according to ABC News. The National Archives, which reportedly briefed the White House counsel's office in February and has been in "regular" contact with the office, can only advise the counsel's office on record-keeping.

If the Trump administration seeks to dispose of archived communications that "no longer have administrative, historical, informational or evidentiary value," it is required to consult with Ferriero in writing.

Ferriero added that the National Archives has not issued guidelines to the Trump administration on preserving communications to and from the president's smartphone. Trump has reportedly replaced his unsecured Android phone with an iPhone that has been secured, but reportedly continued to tweet from the Android through March.

Trump, who has been known for his prolific use of Twitter, has tweeted more than 34,000 times since joining the social media platform in 2009. The president's tweets have also been archived online in a project called the Trump Twitter Archive, Vice reports.

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The database allows users to search for tweets by keyword or browse collections of tweets such as "Retaliation," "Profanity" and "Feud: Rosie O'Donnell."

The website also archives tweets from Trump's children, as well as Vice President Mike Pence, and Republican House Speaker Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin.

Sources: ABC News, AP via Star Tribune, Vice, Trump Twitter Archive / Photo credit: Donald J. Trump/Facebook

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