Sunday, July 14, 2019

No News

While some political analysts from both parties insist the media should not focus on the President's Tweets, but rather policies, we need to note here that Tweeting is the President's preferred form of messaging, that the Tweets come on the weekend that the President has directed raids directed at removing individuals and families with deportation orders from the country and when recent infighting between some of the [Democratic] Party's more progressive members and Speaker Nancy Pelosi has come into public view.
Michel Martin "Florida Democrat Responds To Trump's Racially Charged Tweets Against Congresswomen"
And...? None of this makes the fact that "President Trump Tweeted that progressive Congresswomen should return to their countries of origin," any more newsworthy or otherwise worth spending time on. It's already understood that of the progressive Congresswomen (who have become known as "the Squad") that people believe the President was targeting with his Tweet, that only one was actually born outside of the United States. On that basis, there is an argument that this could be added to the President's list of false or misleading statements, but to what end?

This is nothing more than the President taking pot shots on Twitter at people who have the temerity to disagree with his policies. And he's doing it in a way that appeals to the nativist component of his base of support. In other words, it's water being wet. For Trumpist voters, whether or not the members of the Squad were born in the United States or not is beside the point. If they're not enough like themselves, they don't count as genuine Americans. The President isn't likely to do anything of the sort himself, but if someone comes up with some "evidence" that the Squad's membership aren't really citizens, expect Birtherism 2.0 to manifest. As for Democratic voters, they're not likely to escalate the dispute between the Squad and Speaker Pelosi over this. They understand that President Trump is attempting to sow division in the Democratic ranks in order to boost his chances of remaining in office come January of 2021.

Given an entire planet to cover, it strikes me as unlikely that President Trump being President Trump is actually newsworthy enough to give a Democratic Representative one-tenth of an hour-long broadcast simply so they can tell everyone that they're outraged, outraged by the President going after his political opponents on Twitter. And given the 20 seconds of airtime given over to justifying the piece, I'm sure that it likely struck someone at NPR the same way.

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