If you thought that 100 thousand dead Americans would keep Trump busy enough to slow his erratic Twitter habits, you're about to be sorely disappointed.
In fact, Trump is becoming even more unhinged.
The danger of the highly contagious virus that's upended daily life in the United States is forcing state governments to confront how they'll operate primary elections and even the general election in November. Democrats are calling for expanded vote-by-mail efforts, such as automatically mailing absentee ballots to each citizen. This would prevent people from having to risk exposure to the virus by waiting in long lines and at crowded polling places.
Republicans, who tend to benefit from lower voter turnout, insist that voters must cast their ballot in person unless there's a so-called legitimate reason.
Trump railed against expanded vote-by-mail access in a Twitter rant.
There is NO WAY (ZERO!) that Mail-In Ballots will be anything less than substantially fraudulent. Mail boxes will b… https://t.co/les5rPlDLQ— Donald J. Trump (@Donald J. Trump)1590495473.0
....living in the state, no matter who they are or how they got there, will get one. That will be followed up with… https://t.co/SvXc52LTlG— Donald J. Trump (@Donald J. Trump)1590495475.0
But out of all of Trump's nearly 50 thousand tweets, these two featured something new: an embedded fact check from Twitter.
The two tweets featured an option that said "Get the facts," which guided users to news links, along with the summary below:
Trump was none too happy about the correction, and accused Twitter—a private company—of stamping out his free speech, threatening to shut them down.
....happen again. Just like we can’t let large scale Mail-In Ballots take root in our Country. It would be a free f… https://t.co/3qZCMy52Rs— Donald J. Trump (@Donald J. Trump)1590577913.0
But only hours after Trump promised to "closely regulate or close them down," Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, however inadvertently, directly contradicted his boss.
The U.S. stands against, and will not tolerate, government-imposed Internet shutdowns and other forms of censorship… https://t.co/i2nFJwAMjI— Secretary Pompeo (@Secretary Pompeo)1590585869.0
Pompeo was announcing the federal government's partnership with the Freedom Online Coalition, which works to fight governmental regulation of the internet.
People were understandably confused.
Maybe these two should talk https://t.co/it2Yu9eIIG— Ryan Lizza (@Ryan Lizza)1590588224.0
@RobbieGramer @kaitlancollins I hope there is a briefing today so the media can ask trump how he feels about being… https://t.co/tP2Y8o5FGX— Robin S. Vaccaro (@Robin S. Vaccaro)1590588184.0
@RyanLizza @gtconway3d Trump: You Can't Stifle My Free Speech! wahhhhh Also Trump: I'm gonna close down Twitter. wahhhhh— Lindsey rose (@Lindsey rose)1590591746.0
@RyanLizza 🎶"One of these things is not like the other..."🎶— Sharon V. Foster (@Sharon V. Foster)1590599753.0
@SecPompeo @FO_Coalition Does this include the President threatening to shut down American internet companies? https://t.co/VGu1CT1ga6— Brandon Hieb (@Brandon Hieb)1590587865.0
Trump's threat to shut down private companies for fact checking him, while simultaneously accusing them of stifling free speech, didn't earn him any favors.
Oh look, now @realDonaldTrump wants to use government to shut down free speech in the private sector. Thank goodnes… https://t.co/Ey77TmzPq6— Ted Lieu (@Ted Lieu)1590603296.0
@realDonaldTrump "Clean up your act" translates to- Do as I say and agree with everything I do, now if Twitter did… https://t.co/iFptfc411I— Rickey Williams (@Rickey Williams)1590608847.0
@realDonaldTrump What you’re describing is the opposite of free speech.— Griffin Newman (@Griffin Newman)1590587434.0
Are we great again yet?