On Friday night, Donald Trump began retweeting a series of deranged, untrue, and harmful tweets from various suspicious Twitter accounts. The whole thing was so profoundly deranged, even by Trump’s usual standards, it drew widespread attention. Various observers cited it as the latest sign that impeachment is pushing Trump completely over the edge. Now some of those retweets have vanished.
At some point today, Donald Trump (or one of his social media handlers) decided to delete/undo some of Trump’s retweets from last night. Because these were retweets to begin with, it’s tougher to track precisely which ones were removed and when. For instance, the most reliable database for tracking Trump’s deleted tweets doesn’t track retweets. But we can point to a few specific retweets that are now missing.
For instance, Donald Trump retweeted a post that included the name of a CIA employee who has often been accused by the far-right of being the whistleblower. We have no idea if this person is actually the whistleblower, but Trump’s attempt at outing the whistleblower was a felony on his part. So it’s perhaps not surprising that Trump and/or his people decided to walk it back today. But guess what? Returning the money to the bank the next day doesn’t mean you didn’t rob the bank to begin with.
Donald Trump also deleted several consecutive retweets he’d made from the same obscure, hate-filled, unhinged Twitter account. It’s unclear if Trump’s handlers also deemed these tweets to have been over the line, or if this was simply an attempt at making it look like Trump didn’t just delete the whistleblower tweet. In any case, this is a clear signal that Team Trump is panicking about just how far over the edge Donald Trump’s behavior is going.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report