Newly released internal emails from the National Park Service show President Donald Trump got, “directly involved” in the NPS investigation into the source of a tweet with unflattering crowd sizes on Inauguration Day.
CBS News reports that, “after the retweet and ensuing news coverage of its deletion, the size of the crowd at the inauguration became one of the dominant news stories of Mr. Trump’s first days in office.”
The controversy began with an Inauguration Day retweet — from the official NPS twitter account — of a crowd comparison with Barack Obama’s 2009 swearing-in. The initial tweet came from New York Times correspondent Binyamin Appelbaum:
— Binyamin Appelbaum (@BCAppelbaum) January 20, 2017
Now, 995 pages of government documents released in response to a Freedom of Information Act request show the direct involvement of Trump.
Previously, the Washington Post reported that NPS director Michael T. Reynolds was pressured the morning after the inauguration to produce photos substantiating the President’s claims of a million to a million and a half in attendance. “Experts, however, have estimated that the 2017 turnout was no more than a third the size of Obama’s eight years earlier.”
Four days after the NPS twitter account posted evidence documenting Trump’s small turnout, the Badlands National Park twitter account became an internet sensation after tweeting on Climate Change.
The White House ignored CBS News’ request for comment on Trump’s involvement.