House Democrats just filed a new bill to regulate the records retention of Presidential tweets, naming it after the infamous late night Trump typo “covfefe.”
Democratic Congressman Mike Quigley (D-IL) filed the Communications Over Various Feeds Electronically for Engagement (COVFEFE) Act today to ensure there will be no more deletions of Presidential tweets, because they are an important part of the public record.
The Hill reports that the Illinois representative filed the COVFEFE bill because he’s concerned that President Trump may try to delete more tweets to avoid accountability. Quigley said:
“President Trump’s frequent, unfiltered use of his personal Twitter account as a means of official communication is unprecedented. 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. Tweets are powerful, and the President must be held accountable for every post.”
Last week, Spicer confirmed they should be taken as official presidential statements. “The president is president of the United States, so they are considered official statements by the president of the United States,” he said.
Rep. Quigley’s bill is a sign that social media has fully matured from just a place to share baby pictures into a mass medium for America’s public debate.
Last week, the Knight First Amendment Institute highlighted the critical First Amendment protections that President Trump is unlawfully transgressing by blocking people from his Twitter feed.
It’s sad enough that we have a President who is risking a Middle Eastern war by tweeting instead working with the State Department, but we can’t even trust Trump to use social media without an act of Congress to regulate his indiscriminate online behavior.
The COVFEFE Act deserves bipartisan support, since it will apply to all future Presidents of both parties, and maybe make them think twice before casting their words into eternity.