On Friday morning, President Donald Trump fired off an inspired tweetstorm, taking aim at multiple, seemingly unrelated targets. Those are, in order: The Senate filibuster rule, terrorists responsible for Friday's terrorist attack in London, Scotland Yard for not being “proactive” enough in pursuing terrorists, and ESPN in light of comments by host Jemele Hill.
In recent weeks, Trump had, while dealing with the aftermath of Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, ostensibly been on something of a break from his usual combating tweeting style, but that ended with a string of five tweets in 43 minutes:
The filibuster rule has been a target of Trump's since the Republicans were unable to pass any version of its bill to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act earlier this year. His latest comments come as he tries to get a new tax plan passed, something he tweeted about on Wednesday.
With regard to the London terrorist attack, the president appears to have broken the news, via shared intelligence, that the perpetrators were already known the British law enforcement. The New York Times's Maggie Haberman quickly jumped on that angle:
Meanwhile, Nick Timothy, the former chief of staff for British Prime Minister Theresa May, quickly noted that regardless of whether Trump's comment about Scotland Yard was true, it was potentially detrimental to the investigation:
Asked by Sebastian Payne of The Financial Times if Trump was making a generalization, Timothy answered that it didn't necessarily matter:
With regard to the tweet about the travel ban, that is mainly notable for Trump contradicting past legal arguments that it was not actually a “ban.”
As for the ESPN tweet, Trump is referring to “SportsCenter” co-anchor Jemele Hill calling him a “white supremacist” in a tweet earlier this week. Hill did not make any such comments on the air, though ESPN did, according to a report from ThinkProgress, try to pull her and replace her with a different black anchor, something the network denies.
While the president is correct that ESPN has been bleeding subscribers as of late, that is largely a consequence of cable TV providers moving the network to higher and/or sports-specific tiers because of its $7.21 per subscriber carriage fee, the largest is cable television. Non-sports fans had long called for the option