His tweets have the power to shape international relations, send stock prices up — or down — and galvanize the American public.
We're watching how Donald Trump is using this platform of unfettered communication now that he’s commander in chief. Here is everything Trump has tweeted since he was sworn in as 45th president of the United States. In many cases, we look at what he was reacting to and whether what he said was accurate. And, as much as possible, we'll relate what else was going on at the time. Check back for more as Trump continues to tweet.
Hours after a van plowed through a crowd in Barcelona, Spain, and left at least 12 people dead, President Trump tweeted condemnation of the attack and quickly followed with a statement about U.S. Army Gen. John Joseph Pershing that historians describe as urban legend.
The full claim, which Trump repeated several times during his 2016 presidential campaign, is that in the aftermath of the Philippine-American War of 1899-1902, Pershing had his men dip 50 bullets in pig blood and use them to kill 49 Muslim prisoners. The survivor was told to relay the experience to others.
The story claims that terrorism decreased for decades.
If true, the story would constitute a war crime under U.S. law, which prohibits execution of prisoners.
The tale has circulated across the Internet for years. Trump told it in February 2016 during a speech to supporters in North Charleston, S.C., in which he lauded the benefits of heavy-handed interrogation techniques.
"He took 50 bullets, and he dipped them in pigs’ blood. And he had his men load his rifles, and he lined up the 50 people, and they shot 49 of those people. And the 50th person, he said: 'You go back to your people, and you tell them what happened.' And for 25 years, there wasn’t a problem. OK? Twenty-five years, there wasn’t a problem," Trump told the crowd.
Two months later during a speech that criticized President Obama's acceptance of Middle Eastern war refugees into the U.S., Trump told the same story to supporters in Costa Mesa. This time, he altered the number of problem-free years from 25 to 42.
In a 2013 edition of Pershing's memoir, a letter from Maj. Gen. J. Franklin Bell to Pershing was added in the footnote. The letter described a long "custom to bury [insurgents] with pigs when they kill Americans." Bell called the tactic "a good plan."
The letter does indicate that pig blood was at one time used, or at the very least discussed, as an intimidation tactic against Muslim fighters, since Islam considers pigs unclean.
But there's no evidence that Pershing – who historians describe as less brutal than his predecessors – ever used such a technique.
"This story is a fabrication and has long been discredited," Brian McAllister Linn, a Texas A&M University historian, told Politifact. "I am amazed it is still making the rounds."
A van plowed into crowds of pedestrians in Barcelona’s historic Las Ramblas district on Thursday, leaving bloodied people sprawled on the sidewalk and sending others fleeing an attack claimed by the militant group Islamic State.
At least 12 people were killed and 80 injured, the president of Spain's Catalonia region, Carles Puigdemont, said.
President Trump immediately denounced the attack.
More than two hours after the initial attack, a car ran over two police officers in another part of the city, authorities said.
It was not immediately clear whether the attack on the police officers was related to the original incident.
Amaq, a news agency affiliated with Islamic State, released a statement saying the van attack had been carried out by its “soldiers” in response to the “coalition countries,” presumed to be a reference to the nations, including Spain, that are battling the militant group in Iraq and Syria.
Showing his characteristic refusal to back down in the face of criticism, President Trump deepened his defense of Confederate war memorials Thursday, sending out a series of messages on Twitter that adopted the language and arguments of white nationalists who have opposed their removal.
Trump's equation of Gens. Lee and Jackson, who took up arms against the Constitution, with Presidents Washington and Jefferson repeated one of the major arguments that defenders of the Confederate monuments have made.
Monuments to leaders of the Confederacy were erected across the South, and in some other parts of the country, mostly starting in the early years of the 20th century, as whites fought to prevent black citizens from voting and increased the strictures of segregation that barred blacks from schools, hotels, restaurants and white sections of trains and other public accommodations.
The placement of the statues and monuments in public squares coincided with the rise of the Ku Klux Klan and the murder of thousands of blacks by lynch mobs in the early decades of the last century.
To blacks, and many white Southerners, the statues have long been a symbol of racial oppression. In recent years, the movement to take them down and, in some cases, put them in museums instead of public parks, has gained strength in many Southern cities.
President Trump assured the public that he planned to work during the remainder of his time at his New Jersey golf club.
Trump tweeted Thursday morning that he would take meetings in Bedminster, N.J. He returned there Wednesday to resume his 17-day "working vacation" after brief visits to Washington and New York.
Trump planned to meet separately Thursday at his golf club with Linda McMahon, the administrator of the Small Business Administration, and Florida Gov. Rick Scott, a longtime Trump supporter.
Trump also prepared for an unusual meeting Friday at the Camp David presidential retreat in Maryland with his national security team to discuss strategy for South Asia, including India, Pakistan and Afghanistan.
Vice President Mike Pence was cutting short a long-planned Latin America tour to attend the meeting.
Though out of public view, Trump sought to make his voice heard on Twitter as he found himself increasingly under siege and alone while fanning the controversy over race and politics toward a full-fledged national conflagration.
In other tweets Thursday morning, the president attacked two Republican senators and the news media, deepened his defense of Confederate war memorials, condemned an attack in Barcelona, Spain, and repeated a widely discredited anecdote about a U.S. Army general's treatment of Muslim prisoners.
President Trump attacked two Republican lawmakers, Sens. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina and Jeff Flake of Arizona, in tweets Thursday morning, deepening his feud with members of his party.
Both men got the sort of unkind brands Trump favors: "Flake Jeff Flake" and "Publicity seeking Lindsey Graham."
Strikingly, the president offered a semi-endorsement of Kelli Ward, a former Arizona state senator who plans to challenge Flake in a primary next year – a stand that would put him at odds not only with Flake, but with the state's senior senator, John McCain, whom Trump jabbed, not for the first time, earlier this week.
Presidents almost never get involved in primary battles against incumbents of their own parties – when they have, the efforts have usually ended badly for the White House.
Trump's jabs come two days after he again attacked McCain and after last week's series of slams against the Republican leader of the Senate, Mitch McConnell. In this case, Trump's intervention likely will deepen his fight with two senators at once, McCain and Flake – just as the president has, perhaps not coincidentally, scheduled a political rally in their state for Tuesday, in Phoenix.
Last month, after McCain was diagnosed with brain cancer, Ward publicly called on him to step down from the Senate, saying he would die soon and that Gov. Doug Ducey should consider her as a replacement. She ran against McCain and lost in 2016 in a bitter primary in which she said he was too old to be reelected.
Ward is a favorite of a family of wealthy, deeply conservative, Republicans donors, the Mercers, who have been major financial backers of Trump and also of his strategist, Stephen K. Bannon.
White House officials have met with Ward and other candidates who might oppose Flake, and White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders recently made a point of leaving open the possibility that Trump would get involved in the primary.
Further deepening the feud, Trump also took a swipe at McCain's closest ally in the Senate, Graham, calling him a "publicity seeking" lawmaker.
Trump criticized Graham for what the senator had said about Trump's remarks on the violence last weekend in Charlottesville, Va.
The reference to Graham's "trouncing" presumably referred to Graham's poor showing when he briefly sought the GOP presidential nomination last year. He was easily reelected to the Senate in 2014.
In a statement, Graham responded that Trump's praise of Heyer was "very nice and appropriate. Well done."
"However, because of the manner in which you handled the Charlottesville tragedy, you are now receiving praise from some of the most racist and hate-filled individuals and groups in our country."
In a separate tweet, Trump accused "the Fake News" of distorting "what I say about hate, bigotry, etc. Shame!"
After President Trump signed an executive order in January and vowed to strip federal funds from "sanctuary" cities, Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Gimenez decided to honor federal authorities' requests to hold county prisoners for deportation.
Trump thanked Gimenez in a tweet that contained a video of Atty. Gen. Jeff Sessions speaking Wednesday in Miami, where he denounced Chicago for its defiant “sanctuary city” stance, again blaming the city’s surge in crime on policies designed to protect immigrants.
Although the link between illegal immigration and rising crime is weak — studies show immigrants tend to commit crimes at lower rates than other people — Sessions suggested Miami’s policies contributed to a dramatic drop in homicides.
“The same Independence Day weekend when Chicago suffered more than 100 shootings and 15 homicides, Miami-Dade also had a historic number of shooting deaths — zero,” Sessions said.
He said the Trump administration would not continue giving money to cities “that actively undermine the safety and efficacy of federal law enforcement and actively frustrate efforts to reduce crime in their cities.”
“So if voters in Chicago are concerned about losing federal grant money: Call your mayor,” Sessions said.
The dangers of immigrant crime are a major concern for Trump’s base of voters, and the issue was a favorite theme of his campaign. Sessions, a hard-line advocate for reducing immigration while serving in the U.S. Senate, has made the cause a top priority for the Justice Department
– This post contains reporting by staff writer Joseph Tanfani
President Trump, facing another tough patch in his presidency, will hold his first rally in the West since his inauguration, announcing Wednesday that he will travel to Arizona next week.
The rally could provide a place for Trump to announce a pardon for Joe Arpaio, the former Arizona county sheriff and Trump campaign supporter who was recently convicted of having defied a judge’s order to stop racial profiling of Latinos when he was in office.
Trump told a Fox News contributor this week that he was considering a pardon, which would be broadly controversial but potentially excite some of his core supporters.
The trip is a departure for Trump, who has previously stuck mostly to Ohio, West Virginia and other areas with traditional white, blue-collar voters for such events. He has seldom traveled west of the Mississippi since becoming president.
The mayor of Phoenix responded with his own message for Trump: Please stay away.
Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton, a Democrat, released a statement calling on the president to halt his plans as the nation continues to grapple with fallout from the violence in Charlottesville, Va., last weekend.
Stanton also warned Trump against any pardon of Arpaio.
–This post contains reporting from staff writers Noah Bierman and Kurtis Lee
President Trump returned to his New Jersey golf club Wednesday after two nights at his home at New York's Trump Tower.
At his golf club, Trump signed into law an updated veterans' education bill that marks the largest expansion of college assistance for military veterans in a decade.
Journalists were not permitted to watch Trump sign the bill, as the White House has done for earlier veterans' legislation he has turned into law.
The Forever GI Act immediately removed a 15-year time limit on the use of GI benefits. The measure also increases financial assistance for thousands serving in the National Guard and Reserve, building on a 2008 law that guaranteed veterans a full-ride scholarship to any in-state public university, or a similar cash amount to attend private colleges.
Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin, who joined Trump for the signing, said the new law also provides benefits to Purple Heart recipients whose injuries forced them to leave the service. Benefits can also now be transferred to the eligible dependent of service members who are killed in the line of duty.
Wednesday's signing came the day after Trump was soundly rebuked for continuing to insist that "both sides" were culpable for an outbreak of violence in Charlottesville, Va., over the weekend between white supremacists and counter-demonstrators.
America’s top business executives may have bristled over President Trump's ban on refugees, his withdrawal from the Paris climate accord and his decision to bar transgender Americans from the military.
But it wasn’t until the embattled president all but defended white supremacists in the aftermath of the deadly clashes over the weekend in Charlottesville, Va., that the country’s corporate elite decided they had had enough.
By Wednesday, so many executives had resigned from Trump’s economic advisory and manufacturing councils, including the heads of General Electric Co., Intel Corp. and Campbell Soup Co., that the president announced on Twitter that he was disbanding the panels.
Some members pushed back on Trump’s suggestion that the disbandment was the president’s decision. JPMorgan Chase & Co. chief Jamie Dimon said the economic advisory council, known formally as the Strategic and Policy Forum, had already decided to end on its own.
Members began discussing dissolving the group after watching Trump's news conference Tuesday, according to a source familiar with the matter speaking on condition of anonymity.
Forum members organized a call for 11:30 a.m. Eastern time Wednesday to survey who wanted to stay in or out. The group overwhelmingly sought to shut the forum down, according to the source.
Leaders of consumer brands expressed concern about how their images could be tarnished, while heads of other corporations feared the effect Trump was having on the business climate. The group informed Trump of their decision, who agreed and posted his tweet, the source said.
The dissolution of the councils marks corporate America’s strongest repudiation yet of Trump, who ascended to the White House touting himself as the first CEO president.
President Trump tweeted for the first time about Heather Heyer, the young woman who lost her life over the weekend in Charlottesville, Va.
A memorial service was taking place Wednesday in Charlottesville for Heyer, who was killed Saturday during violent clashes between white nationalists protesting the pending removal of a Confederate statue and counter-demonstrators. Heyer was killed when a driver rammed his car into the counter-protesters.
Trump told reporters Tuesday that he planned to reach out to Heyer's family. The White House did not respond to questions Wednesday about whether Trump had contacted the family.
With a strong push from President Trump, Alabama Sen. Luther Strange secured a runoff spot late Tuesday in the Republican primary for his seat.
The senator now faces top vote-getter Roy Moore, the outspoken former chief justice of the Alabama Supreme Court. Moore’s horseback ride to the polls Tuesday demonstrated the political showmanship that has made him a favorite among Alabama voters.
With about four-fifths of precincts reporting results late Tuesday, Moore had 43% of the vote, compared with 31% for Strange. With no candidate achieving the 50% needed to secure the nomination, the Republican runoff is set for Sept. 26.
The race exposed the potential reach as well as the limits of Trump’s influence, even in a state where the president remains hugely popular.
Voters consistently preferred Moore, despite a strong White House endorsement for Strange, who took over the seat this year when Jeff Sessions, the state’s longtime senator, resigned to become U.S. attorney general.
But Trump’s support appears to have at least enabled Strange to avoid the embarrassment of not securing the second spot.
“We’re on to the runoff,” Moore tweeted as the Associated Press called the race about two hours after polls closed. “Time for conservatives across Alabama to unite and deliver a knockout punch to the establishment!”
Trump’s investment in the race was never a sure bet in the primary. And it may not be one that can be easily replicated in other contested Republican primaries in Nevada and Arizona, where the president is far less popular.
The latest nuclear crisis with North Korea appeared to ease Tuesday as Pyongyang and Washington sought to lower tension before their increasingly heated threats could spiral into war.
President Trump hailed the de-escalation Wednesday in a tweet.
The question is what happens next in the world’s most dangerous hot spot.
U.S. and South Korean military forces are gearing up to start joint large-scale air, land and sea maneuvers Monday in South Korea. The annual exercises, dubbed Ulchi-Freedom Guardian, normally involve 17,500 U.S. troops and last for 10 days.
Kim Jong Un’s government has always denounced the joint exercises as a provocative ruse designed to hide a U.S. invasion. North Korea expressed outrage again Tuesday, but in the kind of furious rhetoric that in some ways signaled a return to what passes for normality.
In contrast, North Korea had unveiled a highly specific plan last week to fire four mid-range ballistic missiles over several Japanese islands and into international waters about 20 miles off Guam, a U.S. territory in the Pacific that hosts two major U.S. military bases.
On Tuesday, the state news agency said Kim had toured the command post of the country’s strategic missile force, and then quoted him saying he would “watch a little more” before firing anything toward Guam, language that helped defuse the standoff.
China repeated its calls Tuesday for the U.S. and South Korea to suspend the military exercises as a show of good faith to give diplomatic breathing room to restart the multilateral talks with North Korea that collapsed in 2008.
The Trump administration has rejected that appeal in the past, and the Pentagon gave no indication Tuesday that it was changing its plans even as Secretary of State Rex Tillerson insisted he was looking for a way to restart negotiations.
Frank Aum, a former Pentagon advisor on North Korea who contributes to 38 North, an analysis website that focuses on the country, said the crisis could reignite quickly because the “underlying sources of tension are still there.”
“There have always been issues between North Korea and the United States, but we’ve shown restraint,” he said. “The difference now is the war of words. Kim Jong Un will use bellicose language and President Trump dishes it right back.”
John Curtis, the mayor of Provo, Utah, will likely fill the congressional seat vacated by former Rep. Jason Chaffetz.
On Tuesday, Curtis won a three-way Republican primary in the state’s deeply conservative 3rd Congressional District, which spans much of Provo and portions of Salt Lake City.
Curtis, a Mormon, who has served as mayor since 2010, is widely regarded as a moderate. Last year, he did not vote for then-presidential candidate Donald Trump, citing moral concerns about the Republican nominee. Even so, on Wednesday, Trump retweeted a Fox New alert about Curtis’ win, saying “Congratulations John!”
Curtis' primary victory is expected to lead to a win in the fall general election; Democrats are significantly under-matched in the district. Republicans have won the seat in every general election since 1998.
Chaffetz held the seat since 2009 and stepped down in June to begin work at Fox News.
While in Congress, Chaffetz served as chairman of the House Oversight Committee and was a leader among Republicans in investigations of Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server while she was secretary of State.
– This post contains reporting from staff writer Kurtis Lee
President Trump renewed his attack on e-commerce giant Amazon, saying Wednesday that the company is "doing great damage to tax paying retailers."
The president has been a frequent critic of the company and Chief Executive Jeff Bezos, who also owns the Washington Post.
Many traditional retailers are closing stores and blaming Amazon for a shift to buying goods online. But the company has been hiring thousands of warehouse workers on the spot at job fairs across the country. Amazon has announced a goal of adding 100,000 full-time workers by the middle of next year.
Trump has said that Amazon does not pay "Internet taxes," but it's unclear what he meant by that. Amazon.com collects state sales taxes in all 45 states with a sales tax and the District of Columbia, according to their website. State governments have sought to capture sales tax lost to online retailers, though they have struggled with a 1992 Supreme Court ruling that found for a state to collect sales tax from a retailer, the retailer must have a physical presence within state borders.
The issue arose recently in South Carolina. This summer, the state Department of Revenue filed a case with the Administrative Law Court, alleging that Amazon had failed to collect taxes on third-party merchant sales.
Third-party merchant sales involve items that can be bought on Amazon.com, but the company acts solely as a middleman between buyers and sellers.
The state's case is in its early stages, and a court date has not been set.
President Trump on Tuesday ripped three top corporate chief executives who resigned from his manufacturing council in protest of his handling of the Charlottesville, Va., violence, calling them "grandstanders” and saying they were embarrassed because they made their products abroad.
Trump's criticism came as three other members of the council announced they were stepping down as well.
Later Tuesday, in an appearance in the lobby of Trump Tower, Trump told reporters that the executives who resigned from his advisory council were “not taking their jobs seriously as it pertains to this country.”
He specifically said Merck was manufacturing drugs abroad, even though he praised Merck last month for a new U.S. manufacturing initiative with two other companies.
“Some of the folks that will leave [the council], they’re leaving out of embarrassment because they make their products outside. I’ve been lecturing them … about you have to bring it back to this country,” Trump said. “I want manufacturing to be back into the United States so that American workers can benefit.”
Kenneth Frazier, chief executive of Merck & Co., publicly announced Monday that he was stepping down from the council because he felt “a responsibility to take a stand against intolerance and extremism.”
President Trump repeatedly tweeted his support for Alabama Sen. Luther Strange as polls opened Tuesday morning in the Republican primary for Strange's seat.
Strange should have had an easy lock on the seat he took over when Jeff Sessions, the state’s longtime senator, resigned to become the Trump administration’s attorney general.
But the race has become an early test of Trump’s power to persuade his most dedicated supporters.
Trump’s approval rating remains sky-high in Alabama, but that enthusiasm has not spilled over to Strange, who is also favored by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.).
Strange is trailing fiery former judge Roy Moore, according to recent polling.
The outcome could foreshadow a deepening feud between the GOP’s base voters and party leaders in the months to come.
Some voters will surely be inspired by Trump’s endorsement of Strange. But others still have doubts about how Strange was appointed to replace Sessions and his ties to McConnell and other Republican leaders, who have grown increasingly unpopular among many in the base.
“They’re confused,” said Terry Lathan, chairwoman of the Alabama Republican Party.
With no candidate likely to emerge with a majority from a field that started with 10 Republicans, the top two vote-getters are expected to compete in a runoff in September.
President Trump's recent Twitter activity has raised a few eyebrows.
Late Monday, Trump retweeted a neo-Nazi conspiracy theorist on Chicago homicides -- as outrage continued to pour in over the president's delayed condemnation of white supremacists and the KKK following the violence in Charlottesville, Va., over the weekend.
On Tuesday morning, Trump apparently retweeted, then deleted, an image of a man with a CNN logo on his face being hit by a "Trump" train.
Also Tuesday, Trump retweeted Twitter user Mike Holden, who was responding to a "Fox & Friends" tweet by calling the president a fascist.
The retweet was deleted, but Holden appeared to have taken a screenshot.
Amid criticism for his response to violence that ensued between white supremacists and counter-protesters in Charlottesville, Va., on Saturday, President Trump retweeted Jack Posobiec – an alt-right media figure who pushed the PizzaGate and Seth Rich conspiracy theories.
After blaming "many sides" for the initial violence that left one counter-protester dead, Trump on Monday condemned the KKK, neo-Nazis and white supremacists as "criminals and thugs."
For many, the response was too little, too late. Three CEOs stepped down from the White House manufacturing council, and criticism of the president continued.
Posobiec is well-known in alt-right circles. He was a vocal believer that top Democrats were involved in a child sex trafficking ring at a Washington, D.C., pizza parlor, and that the Democratic National Committee was behind the death of former staffer Seth Rich.
His tweet had nothing to do with Charlottesville, instead linking to a story about Chicago homicides. It's unclear why Trump chose now to retweet Posobiec to his 35.9 million followers.
President Trump tweeted upon arriving in New York on Monday night, as he prepared to stay overnight there for the first time since he took office.
Trump traveled to Manhattan after a brief visit to the White House, which is undergoing renovations while he vacations at his golf resort in New Jersey.
The native New Yorker said Friday that he had stayed away since January because he realized the impact of the street closings and other aspects of a presidential visit.
"I would love to go to my home in Trump Tower, but it's very, very disruptive to do," he said.
Protesters were awaiting the president's arrival Monday. Trump had taken a firmer stand earlier in the day on the white supremacist violence that wracked Charlottesville, Va., over the weekend.
But for many of the protesters, his remarks were too late, overshadowed by his statement on Saturday that "many sides" were responsible for the Charlottesville violence and his initial failure to name white supremacist groups as aggressors.
– This post contains reporting from the Associated Press and Times correspondent Matt Hansen
President Trump on Monday answered two days of bipartisan furor over his initial response to deadly protests in Charlottesville, Va., with a statement for the first time explicitly blaming white supremacists for the “racist violence” over the weekend.
But in a tweet sent hours later, Trump appeared to suggest that he'd spoken out only to appease his critics and seemed frustrated that his remarks hadn't done more to silence them.
"Realize once again that the #Fake News Media will never be satisfied," Trump lamented, calling members of the media "truly bad people!"
The president’s statement on Charlottesville was a hastily arranged do-over that implicitly acknowledged the need to stanch the self-inflicted damage his first reaction had caused him and his administration.
Criticism and outrage had continued to build, including among Republicans, to Trump’s Saturday remarks blaming “many sides,” in effect lumping together for fault the anti-racism counter-protesters with the gun-wielding white supremacy groups Trump declined to name.
But the president appeared to resent that such a do-over was warranted. After reading a brief statement from a teleprompter at the White House, he pivoted and left, ignoring reporters’ shouted questions, including several asking whether he regretted his delay in specifically blaming the racists.
During an unrelated announcement on trade later in the day, a reporter asked why he had taken two days to condemn the hate groups by name. “They’ve been condemned. They have been condemned,” Trump snapped.
When asked about a Monday news conference that the White House had announced and then canceled, Trump insisted he had already held one. Then, when the reporter persisted, Trump labeled him “fake news” as he strode from the room.
Trump's outburst and later tweet did little to alleviate criticism from those who suggested that he had been less than eager to denounce the white supremacists but that he had felt forced to do so.
– This post contains reporting from Noah Bierman and Alex Wigglesworth