New Bot Turns Trump Tweets Into Presidential Statements And It's Perfect

“It’s just doing the obvious thing, giving the president’s tweets the honorable treatment they deserve."

Throughout Donald Trump's short presidency, his statements on Twitter have been a source of much controversy.

At times, tweets have hurt him in court — like when they were used as part of the defense to strike down his travel ban. Other times, they've led to turmoil on Capitol Hill, like when he claimed former President Obama "tapped" him — a tweet that led to months of journalistic investigation, Senate inquiries, and public debate about the veracity of his claims.

Now, though, Trump's infamous tweetstorms are being turned into something else entirely: official statements from the President.

A new Twitter bot is taking Trump's tweets and transforming them into what looks like official comments from the president that are typically drafted and released through a team of officials at the White House.  The result is both a hilarious and sobering look at the kind of weight Trump's public comments could — and maybe should — be receiving.

The bot, aptly named @RealPressSecBot, will have a lot of work to do. In his first 100 days in office, the president tweeted 496 times, according to The New York Times tweet tracker. Since then, Trump's actual press secretary Sean Spicer has infamously had to battle the White House press corps over Trump's tweets.

"It's just doing the obvious thing, giving the president's tweets the honorable treatment they deserve," Russel Neiss, the software engineer who made the bot, told WIRED.

For a long time, Spicer's go-to line was that "the President's tweet speaks for itself." Since then, reporters have pressed him about the truthfulness, intention and context behind some of Trump's most controversial tweets. This week, Spicer, when pressed about whether Trump's tweets should be considered official statements, conceded they were.

"The president is president of the United States," Spicer told the White House press corps, "so they are considered official statements by the president of the United States."

While the statement seems obvious, it could cause some trouble. As George Conway, a lawyer and the husband of White House counselor Kellyanne Conway, said on Twitter, "These tweets may make some ppl feel better, but they certainly won't help OSG get 5 votes in SCOTUS, which is what actually matters. Sad."

The "OSG" is the Office of Solicitor General, which argues cases in front of the Supreme Court and — in the event Trump's travel ban went to the highest court — would be trying to defend it.

Despite concerns from the people around him, several news outlets had reported that President Trump would continue to use Twitter as he pleases, and was planning to live tweet former FBI Director James Comey's much-anticipated testimony in front of the Senate Intelligence Committee on Thursday. Instead, Trump stayed quiet, while his son Donald Trump Jr. picked up the slack.

One thing is for certain, though: there will be plenty of official presidential statements to come, both online and off.

Cover photo: Shutterstock / Evan El-Amin.

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