House “Covfefe” Bill Would Archive All of Trump’s Deleted Tweets
When it comes to modern politics, sometimes it’s hard to find humor in the chaos. But when President Donald Trump tweeted out a mysterious (albeit likely misspelled) “covfefe” tweet last month, he did just that–kickstarting a slew of hilarious tweets, memes, and Urban Dictionary definitions.
But if you thought covfefe’s 15 minutes of fame were up, you’d be wrong. A Democratic lawmaker is looking to transform the now-deleted tweet typo into a federal law for archiving presidential tweets.
Who can figure out the true meaning of “covfefe” ??? Enjoy!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 31, 2017
Illinois Representative Mike Quigley introduced the Communications Over Various Feeds Electronically for Engagement (COVFEFE) Act on Monday, which would amend the Presidential Records Act to classify and archive social media posts, including deleted tweets, as “documentary material.”
#COVFEFEAct makes deleting tweets a violation of Presidential Records Act—WH says tweets = official statements; Trump has deleted 18 so far.
— Mike Quigley (@RepMikeQuigley) June 12, 2017
Quigley believes in the importance of holding the president accountable for everything he posts, even on his personal Twitter account.
“In order to maintain public trust in government, elected officials must answer for what they do and say; this includes 140-character tweets,” said Quigley in a statement released on his official website. “President Trump’s frequent, unfiltered use of his personal Twitter account as a means of official communication is unprecedented.”
Despite inheriting the @POTUS account from his predecessor, former President Barack Obama, Trump frequently opts for his personal account, @realDonaldTrump, to communicate with the public. Unlike the @POTUS account, Trump’s personal account isn’t archived in the same manner under the Presidential Records Act.
Quigley also noted that the National Archives previously released a guidance in 2014, which stated that social media merits historical recording. And in April, the National Archives instructed the Trump Administration to document Trump’s tweets in full.
“If the President is going to take to social media to make sudden public policy proclamations, we must ensure that these statements are documented and preserved for future reference,” said Quigley. “Tweets are powerful, and the President must be held accountable for every post.”