President-elect Donald Trump said Wednesday morning that he felt he had been “very restrained” on Twitter since winning the election last month.
The comments came during an interview on NBC’s “Today” show.
“I have not seen you backing off fights on Twitter,” host Matt Lauer said, noting that Trump had recently used the social-media platform to attack Boeing, the cast of Hamilton, The New York Times and other media outlets, and “Saturday Night Live.”
“Is this proving to be a habit that you are finding a difficult time breaking?” Lauer asked.
— Oliver Darcy (@oliverdarcy) December7, 2016
“No, I think I am very restrained,” Trump replied. “And I talk about important things.”
Trump said he had also used Twitter to raise issues he was worried about in regard to China.
“We talked about their devaluation,” he said. “We talked about they are building this massive military fortress in the middle of the South China Sea, which they are not supposed to be doing, and other things.”
Trump also defended his use of Twitter to get his message out, contending that it was more efficient and effective than other mediums.
“Frankly, it’s a modern form of communication,” he said. “Between Facebook and Twitter, I have, I guess, 40 million people. And that’s a modern-day form of communication.”
“I get it out much faster than a press release,” he added. “I get it out much more honestly than dealing with dishonest reporters because so many reporters are dishonest.”
Trump regularly used Twitter throughout the 2016 campaign to attack his rivals. In one instance, he created a media firestorm by going on an early-morning tweetstorm against Democrat Hillary Clinton and a former Miss Universe after the first debate.
In early November, The Times reported that Trump’s aides managed to seize control of his Twitter account as part of efforts to keep him on message during the final stretch of the campaign.
President Barack Obama used the Times report to mock Trump in the final days of the campaign, arguing then that if he couldn’t be trusted to be on Twitter, he shouldn’t be trusted to have the country’s nuclear codes.
“In the last two days, they had so little confidence in his self control, they just said they’re going to take away your Twitter,” Obama said at the time. “If somebody can’t handle a Twitter account, they can’t handle the nuclear codes.”
As Lauer noted in his Wednesday interview, Trump promised after the election to be “very restrained” using Twitter as president.