Donald Trump’s Gillibrand Tweet, Explained

Ron Sachs/CNP via ZUMA

For indispensable reporting on the coronavirus crisis, the election, and more, subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter.

Everyone wants to know what this tweet means:

I’m here to help. As you know, I’ve long been a proponent of the theory that Trump’s tweets are designed primarily (solely?) to create an alternate universe for his fans. They aren’t meant for the rest of us. But I’m now edging toward accepting a different theory: they are meant to keep Trump’s name in the news because he really likes it when CNN talks about him. As the New York Times put it, “One former top adviser said Mr. Trump grew uncomfortable after two or three days of peace and could not handle watching the news without seeing himself on it.”

Trump has real talent at self-promotion, and a sort of animal cunning about what kinds of insinuations will get everyone talking. The obvious insinuation here is that Gillibrand did something sexual, but Trump didn’t actually say that and can self-righteously deny it if anyone mentions it.

So that’s what this is all about. It puts Trump back in the news and might even give him an opportunity to launch another wave of FAKE NEWS tweets. What’s not to like?

Dear Reader,

This feels like the most important fundraising drive since I've been CEO of Mother Jones, with staggeringly high stakes and so much uncertainty. In "News Is Just Like Waste Management," I try to unpack the reality we all face and how we can rise to the challenge. If you're able to, this is a critical moment to support Mother Jones’ nonprofit journalism: We need to raise $400,000 to help cover the vital reporting projects we have planned, and right now is no time to pull back.

Monika Bauerlein, CEO, Mother Jones

Dear Reader,

This feels like the most important fundraising drive since I've been CEO of Mother Jones, with staggeringly high stakes and so much uncertainty. In "News Is Just Like Waste Management," I try to unpack the reality we all face and how we can rise to the challenge. If you're able to, this is a critical moment to support Mother Jones’ nonprofit journalism: We need to raise $400,000 to help cover the vital reporting projects we have planned, and right now is no time to pull back.

Monika Bauerlein, CEO, Mother Jones

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate