Even Trump’s Own Officials Were Reportedly Baffled By POTUS Tweet on Census Question: ‘Nobody Has Any F*cking Idea’
If you were confused by the president contradicting his own administration on the citizenship question that isn’t being printed on the census despite him saying it will be, you’re not alone. Officials in Donald Trump‘s own administration were apparently just as confused too.
This is perhaps best exemplified by a DOJ lawyer who told a judge the president’s tweet “was the first I had heart of the President’s position on this issue” and that “I do not have a deeper understanding of what that means at this juncture other than what the President has tweeted… I am doing the absolute best to figure out what’s going on.”
This DoJ lawyer is all of us pic.twitter.com/dYe1eILSrS
— Brandon Wall (@Walldo) July 3, 2019
The judge too was thrown by the surprise tweet from the president, hence the need to call people in today (the DOJ lawyer was apparently on vacation):
Federal judge: pic.twitter.com/mxmxY28hUc
— erica orden (@eorden) July 3, 2019
Judge says he is “increasingly frustrated” with DOJ. Says if he was dealing with Facebook and a lawyer for Facebook said something & Zuckerberg said another, he would demand Zuckerberg appear in court b/c he would assume lawyer isn’t speaking for Zuckerberg. But client is POTUS.
— Josh Dawsey (@jdawsey1) July 3, 2019
— southpaw (@nycsouthpaw) July 3, 2019
— sarah jeong (@sarahjeong) July 3, 2019
(The full transcript of the above is here.)
And now the DOJ is saying they’ve been instructed to keep pushing for the citizenship question to be included, despite the statements from the DOJ and Commerce Tuesday.
One administration official told The Washington Post Trump “wants to keep fighting” and wasn’t happy about those statements yesterday. The president reportedly even asked about acting through an executive order. The New York Times‘ report adds that this afternoon people in the White House were actively working on a way to satisfy Mr. Trump’s demand but had not yet settled on a solution.”
The Wall Street Journal, meanwhile, reports that people within the administration are just as baffled as everyone else:
The president’s portrayal of the status of adding a citizenship question to the census also confused officials in his administration and advocates for adding such a question, people familiar with the matter said. “Nobody has any f—ing idea,” one of the people said, asked what the president’s tweet was referencing. The person described the tweet as “meaningless.”
And again, the president kicked this all off by tweeting Wednesday, “The News Reports about the Department of Commerce dropping its quest to put the Citizenship Question on the Census is incorrect or, to state it differently, FAKE! We are absolutely moving forward, as we must, because of the importance of the answer to this question.”
The News Reports about the Department of Commerce dropping its quest to put the Citizenship Question on the Census is incorrect or, to state it differently, FAKE! We are absolutely moving forward, as we must, because of the importance of the answer to this question.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 3, 2019
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