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The 'COVFEFE Act' Would Ensure Trump's Tweets Never Die

A congressman has introduced a new bill that calls for classifying Trump's late-night Twitter rants as protected presidential records.

by Drew Schwartz
Jun 12 2017, 7:43pm

Photo via Representative Louise Slaughter's Flickr

President Trump's travel ban might be fated to fail and his push for new healthcare legislation might die in the Senate, but new legislation is looking to guarantee at least one part of his legacy prevails: his tweets.

Democratic representative Mike Quigley introduced a measure to the House of Representatives on Monday to add social media posts to the list of communications covered under the Presidential Records Act, which requires certain presidential records be preserved. Essentially, the Illinois congressman is fighting to prevent Trump from deleting any of his tweets. He's dubbed the measure the Communications Over Various Feeds Electronically for Engagement Act—or COVFEFE, for short.

As if anyone really needs a reminder, just after midnight on May 31, Trump fired a tweet into the digital abyss that read "Despite the negative press covfefe" and left it up for about six hours. And of course, because this is Trump, the world talked about it for like three days. Trump has since deleted the tweet, though his follow-up is still online:

It might seem a little ridiculous to classify a tweet like that as a protected record, which the COVFEFE Act seeks to do. But now that Press Secretary Sean Spicer has declared Trump's rambling tweets are "official statements," Quigley contends they should be treated as such.

"In order to maintain public trust in government, elected officials must answer for what they do and say; this includes 140-character tweets," Quigley said in a statement. "If the President is going to take to social media to make sudden public policy proclamations, we must ensure that these statements are documented and preserved for future reference. Tweets are powerful, and the President must be held accountable for every post."

If Quigley wants the law to mandate Trump's tweets are forever recorded in the scrapbook of democracy, he'll have to keep up this congressional battle. But if he's content with having pretty, official-looking records of the President's late-night rants, he could always just start following @RealPressSecBot.

Follow Drew Schwartz on Twitter.