Oddly, they didn’t seem nearly as interested in the stellar jobs report itself
The leftstream media went into full meltdown mode Friday after President Trump tweeted that he was looking forward to the jobs report.
With the speed of the ace reporters of yore leaping into action when an actual story breaks, they all leaped to their keyboards and tapped out stories about how Trump “broke protocol,” may have broken a federal rule, may be guilty of insider trading or “worse,” was “indiscreet with confidential information,” and on. And on.
Here’s a sampling:
From NBC News: Trump breaks protocol with jobs report tweet
From MarketWatch: Trump’s jobs tweet was a lot worse than insider trading
What information did the president reveal that caused this meltdown?
Seriously, that’s it.
Former Obama admin officials also had plenty to say about the president looking forward to seeing the employment numbers:
Since Trump knows the numbers this is market manipulation https://t.co/T3F4Aqqovf
— Dan Pfeiffer (@danpfeiffer) June 1, 2018
You should have gotten the employment numbers from the Council of Economic Advisers yesterday.
And if this tweet is conveying inside information about a particularly good jobs number you should never get them in advance from the Council of Economic Advisers again. https://t.co/Qd3ig89onT
— Jason Furman (@jasonfurman) June 1, 2018
Trump gets the jobs numbers the night before their release. If he’s tweeting about them before their release, it’s not far-fetched to imagine him telling an investor friend in advance.
Yet more proof that he can’t be trusted with any sensitive information.
— Chris Lu (@ChrisLu44) June 1, 2018
The main complaint appears to be that the president “broke protocol” in his tweet. Protocol, however, is not law, and in this case, it’s nothing more than a policy directive.
[A] 1985 Office of Management and Budget policy directive published in the Federal Register during the administration of President Ronald Reagan outlined an updated procedure to ensure that the jobs report and other significant federal economic indicators would not be released prematurely.
“All employees of the Executive Branch who receive prerelease distribution of information and data estimates … are responsible for assuring that there is no release prior to the official release time,” the directive said.
“Except for members of the staff of the agency issuing the principal economic indicator who have been designated by the agency head to provide technical explanations of the data, employees of the Executive Branch shall not comment publicly on the data until at least one hour after the official release time,” the directive added.
The question appears to be whether or not this restriction applies to the president, and if it does, if he did reveal anything that violates it (like the actual numbers).
USA Today continues:
Jacob Frenkel, a former SEC enforcement attorney, said protocol, practice and tradition, no matter how long in existence, “are not laws or regulations.”
As the nation’s chief executive, the president has the right to disseminate information as he sees fit, said Frenkel, who added: “He did not break or violate any securities laws and acted entirely within his discretion.”
However, Jason Furman, who chaired the Council of Economic Advisers during President Barack Obama’s second term, told The New York Times via email in March 2017: “The interpretation of our administration (like Clinton and Bush) was that this applied to POTUS” (President of the United States). “There were times they wanted Obama to comment, his flight or whatever was taking off at 9:20 and they would hold off until 9:30 so he could comment then.”
Interestingly, CNN’s John King dared anyone to locate evidence of any president since Reagan who breached this protocol. The GOP accepted the dare.
— GOP (@GOP) June 1, 2018
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