Like anybody who slams out a bunch of tweets while he’s distracted, pissed off, or busy on the toilet, President Donald Trump occasionally has to delete some of his online missives due to typos. (And, more rarely, because they contain provocative statements or accusations that not even Trump is willing to stand by.) Unlike the rest of us, though, Trump’s tweets—including the ones he fucks up—are potentially subject to the Presidential Records Act, which is why the House Committee On Government Oversight And Reform recently sent a letter to the White House requesting that Trump keep his thumb off the delete button.
Written by Committee member Elijah Cummings and chairman Jason Chaffetz—the Utah Republican who accidentally coined the iPhone as the new measurement of skyrocketing healthcare costs earlier this week—the letter also addresses the use of private email accounts and encrypted phone apps like WhatsApp? by White House staffers. The letter requests that Trump’s administration hand over details of the training he and his staff have had on the Presidential Records Act and Federal Records Act, as well as information on any auto-archiving protocols the White House has implemented—as President Obama did—to archive incorrect tweets without deleting them. Reading through it, we were struck with that rarest, most bizarre of feelings: sympathy for Donald Trump, now deprived of the ability to correct this tiny subset of his vast collection of public mistakes. Then we remembered that this is probably why most heads of state don’t broadcast their innermost thoughts and plans in writing to the entire internet every two hours, and the feeling went away.