The president is literally tweeting what he sees on TV

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A view of the carnival character depicting US President Donald J. Trump during the preparations of the 2017 Nice Carnival, in Nice, France, on  February 9, 2017. The annual Carnival of Nice will run from 11 to 25 February.
A view of the carnival character depicting US President Donald J. Trump during the preparations of the 2017 Nice Carnival, in Nice, France, on  February 9, 2017. The annual Carnival of Nice will run from 11 to 25 February.

Image: NOGIER/EPA/REX/Shutterstock

On Friday morning, President Donald Trump dropped a seemingly random tweet, referencing a wonky legal blog.

It was Trump’s first tweet of the day, and the first since he shot off “SEE YOU IN COURT, THE SECURITY OF OUR NATION IS AT STAKE!” in response to an appeals court decision that upheld the ban on his immigration executive order. 

What statute is he referring to? Does he read Lawfare Blog? Where did this come from?

Well, it would seem to have come from “Morning Joe,” the MSNBC show that Trump is very cozy with. The show covered the exact same thing just 12 minutes before Trump tweeted.

This isn’t the first time that the president has tweeted out something that appeared to be inspired by his cable news addiction. It’s happening now with some regularity.

Trump, as contentious as he is with the media, clearly can’t resist watching cable news. He reportedly bookends his days in the White House by watching cable news. His tendency to watch particular shows has even allowed MSNBC and Fox News to charge more for advertising.

Here’s a few of the most notable examples of Trumps tendency to tweet based off what he watches.

On January 24, Trump tweeted about Chicago’s crime issue, using stats that appeared on Bill O’Reilly’s show on Fox News an hour before.

On January 26, Trump used the same language as a Fox News segment on Chelsea Manning, even including a screenshot. 

The next day, CNN seemed to stoke Trump’s by way of its interview with Gregg Phillips, a person who claims that there has been widespread illegal voting despite having provided no evidence.

Trump’s media reactions aren’t limited to cable news. He’s also done the same thing with print, often attacking the New York Times after the paper publishes a story that casts his administration in a less-than-admirable light.

Trump’s sensitivity to the media makes more sense in the context of his broader treatment of journalists. Trump made the media a primary target of his presidential campaign, second only to Hillary Clinton — and not by much. This proved to be an effective strategy, insulating Trump from critical coverage. 

This, however, does not appear to be some grand strategy. Trump is just genuinely obsessed with the media. It’s something that has been chronicled for years. Becoming president does not appear to have had any effect on this.

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