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Trump Tweets Try to Spin, Deny Defeat on Census Citizenship Question

Despite his own Commerce Dept. having just announced that it will not include a citizenship question on the 2020 census, President Donald Trump tweeted out his own take on the recent Supreme Court decision and refused to accept defeat.

Hours after the Commerce Dept.’s decision to abandon the legal fight over the census question, Trump sent two Tweets in which he slammed the Court and claimed he would ask both Commerce and the Justice Department to “do whatever is necessary to bring this most vital of questions, and this very important case, to a successful conclusion.”

On MSNBC, a panel of journalists reacting to the Tweets pointed out that Trump’s claims were detached from reality and little more than naked political spin.

“The Supreme Court decided that their argument was just not legitimate, not sufficient. And the Census [Bureau] is now printing those surveys that are going to be mailed to every household across this country,” Jill Colvin, the White House correspondent for the Associated Press explained. “Yet the president refused to admit defeat, insisting there that he’s going to direct the Commerce Department, he’s going to direct DOJ to do something, anything to put that question on a questionnaire that is already being printed. There’s no evidence at all that DOJ or Commerce have taken any steps to try and go along with his will, but he still wants to try to spin to the American people, he still wants to spin to his supporters that he’s won here.”

Washington Post White House bureau chief, Philip Rucker noted that, just days ago, Trump had also suggested — based on no evidence — that he could delay the census planning until his administration had somehow obtained legal permission to ask respondents if they were US citizens.

“What you have here is a president who’s not on the same page as his own government,” Rucker observed. “The Department of Justice and the Commerce Department, which oversees the census, has been moving to adhere to the law and to follow the ruling of the court, which the president refuses to acknowledge. And this is in keeping, by the way, with his general sort of inability, really, to admit a defeat or show any signs of weakness, even when one is at hand. He wants to project to his supporters that he’s going to be defiant and digging in and fighting on.”

“Up is down, down is up,” guest host Ali Velshi added, in summation.

Watch the video above, via MSNBC.

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