Trump 'repeatedly complains about Obama having more Twitter followers than him'

Tom Embury-Dennis

Donald Trump has reportedly complained multiple times about having fewer Twitter followers than Barack Obama.

In a White House meeting with Twitter chief Jack Dorsey on Tuesday, the US president allegedly complained about followers he had lost, and suggested it was part of an anti-Trump agenda by the company.

According to sources familiar with the conversation who spoke to US media, Mr Trump said other conservatives had complained to him they were experiencing similar problems on the platform.

The Daily Beastalso reported sources close to Mr Trump revealed the president has grumbled repeatedly about how Mr Obama has more Twitter followers than he does, despite – by his own assessment – being far better than his predecessor at tweeting.

Mr Trump’s conversation with Mr Dorsey came just hours after the president baselessly accused Twitter of being “very discriminatory” towards Republicans and of playing “political games”.

Mr Dorsey reportedly reassured Mr Trump his company was only deleting fake accounts, and like other users, the president’s account periodically sheds followers when Twitter removes them.

Trump and Obama's Twitter accounts

The meeting came as news broke that Twitter had deactivated roughly 5,000 pro-Trump bots on the platform that pushed out disinformation last week alongside the release of special counsel Robert Mueller’s report on Russia’s influence in the 2016 election.

Later on Tuesday, Mr Trump tweeted: “Great meeting this afternoon at the [White House] with [Mr Dorsey] from [Twitter].

“Lots of subjects discussed regarding their platform, and the world of social media in general. Look forward to keeping an open dialogue!”

Mr Trump, an avid Twitter user, has in recent months attacked the US tech industry, and has threatened to regulate Facebook, Google and Twitter over what he perceives as censorship of conservatives.

The president’s fixation with social media numbers, particularly in relation to Mr Obama, echoes his apparent fury over the fact he attracted far fewer people to his inauguration in 2017.

Mr Trump repeatedly claimed falsely he had a larger crowd than Mr Obama did, and government documents revealed the White House went so far as to edit images of his inauguration to make it look larger.

The White House has been contacted for comment.