President Donald Trump is well-known for his love of the social media platform Twitter, on which he has amassed 61 million followers, but there’s one thing in particular he hates about it: The word “tweet.”
Writing in new book The Real Deal about his time working with the president, former Trump Organization senior executive George Sorial recalls a post-election lunch with his boss at which the subject of Twitter came up.
“For the record, he made the point to us at that lunch that he hated the term ‘tweet’ because it sounds so juvenile. He prefers to refer to them as his messages on social media,” Sorial writes of Trump, who has faced criticism for his offhand tweets, including name-calling of opponents, market-moving threats against other countries and undiplomatic language.
According to the book, President Trump asked those at the West Palm Beach lunch if, as people had often advised him, he should avoid using Twitter or at least show restraint because his tweets were not helping him. Sorial advised him, despite some concerns, to keep going.
“I acknowledged that I might not have been comfortable saying some of the things he did on Twitter, but his tweets and use of Twitter were a huge component of who he was,” Sorial wrote.
“The formula worked, with the result being that he was only the forty-fourth person in history to become the president of the United States. In my opinion, Twitter was part of that chemistry; it worked, and I didn’t think it would be smart to change the secret formula.”
Per Sorial’s recollection of a follow-up discussion on the subject at the White House, Trump said: “It’s the modern form of communication; it’s like owning a newspaper without the losses.
“I’ve got tens of millions of people that follow me on social media, and when I tweet the press immediately pick it up and broadcasts it and publishes it.
“In the past, you have to get filtered through the likes of The Washington Post, and now I can talk directly to people without that filter.”
Sorial continued: “Many people would say, ‘Every day I’m getting incoming and getting hit,” and they would say, ‘I’m not going to tweet anymore,’ but this is a very different person—this is a man who knows what his customers, his base, wants, and he gives it to them.
“This could be detrimental to him, but he carries on because that’s what his supporters want. He acknowledged that Twitter gets him into trouble a lot, but he wants to communicate without any filter and be heard directly by the people who matter: Voters and his supporters.”
The Real Deal: My Decade Fighting Battles and Winning Wars With Trump is authored by Sorial and Damian Bates, a former newspaper editor in Scotland, the president’s ancestral home and where he owns two golf resorts. It is published by Broadside Books.