by Graham Pierrepoint
Seeing US President Donald Trump using Twitter is hardly a shock. After all, it’s been his platform of choice for airing his views on just about everything – various reports say he loves the social platform – and, more often than not, you can get a ton of news about what’s going on White House side by following him as opposed to watching the news! In any case, the President’s use of Twitter – completely unprecedented for a US head of state (though Barack Obama did have an official account, Trump’s style of Twitter use is all his own) – may have landed him in a spot or two of bother in recent times. Last week, it seems, was no different.
Trump reportedly alluded to the status of the month’s jobs report an hour before it was due to be officially released – which, according to some critics, goes both against Presidential protocol and could be a misuse of power. Those critics include legal experts – some of whom suggest that even the mere suggestion of positivity in the report – on such a public forum, and before it was due to be presented – could raise issues with regard to insider trading. It’s been tradition for the President and a number of advisors to gain access to the figures in the monthly employment report the night before it is made public – and, as such, no one is allowed to go public about any of the figures, nor offer an allusion as to what they may contain.
▶ Trump Raises Eyebrows With Tweet Hours Before U.S. Payroll Report Released
The issue here appears to have been the manner in which Trump tweeted about the forthcoming report (which he had already bore witness to). Almost an hour ahead of the reveal, the President advised on Twitter that he was ‘looking forward to seeing the unemployment numbers’. Trump’s positive statement has caused some concern in that it could be construed that he was pointing towards good news – which he knew about – and, as it transpired, the report was indeed positive. It appears that 223,000 more jobs than expected were created in the past month alone – allowing unemployment to drop to its lowest in 18 years, an impressive 3.8%.
Regardless – the supposed foreshadowing of the figures has been leapt upon by those concerned that Trump has misused his presidential right – though the White House has been keen to play down such a concern.