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Trump tweets, finally, after #ComeyHearings spectacle

The US president didn't tweet as the fired FBI director testified before Congress, but his son and others sure did. And then came Friday morning.

James Comey Testifies At Senate Hearing On Russian Interference In US Election

Social media lit up over ex-FBI director James Comey's Senate hearing.

Getty Images

President Donald Trump, perhaps surprisingly, didn't tweet during James Comey's testimony before Congress on Thursday. He waited almost a full day to respond.

But his son Donald Trump Jr. went on something of a tweetstorm while the fired FBI director was speaking before the Senate Intelligence Committee.

Picking up the mantle for his father, Trump Jr. took exception to Comey's accusation that the Trump administration defamed his character and that of the FBI by telling "lies, plain and simple." The younger Trump also tried to deflect Comey's claim that the president wanted an FBI investigation dropped against former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn.

Taking place a month after Trump fired Comey, Thursday's hearing centered on Comey's conversations with the president. It came amid the FBI's continuing investigations into Russian hacking of the 2016 presidential election and potential Trump campaign ties with Russia.

As Trump watched the hearing with his lawyer -- and as online gamblers and opportunistic drinkers stood on alert -- his two Twitter accounts, @realDonaldTrump and @POTUS, remained mum. Trump's private lawyer, Marc Kasowitz, said later on Thursday: "The president never sought to impede the investigation into attempted Russian interference in the 2016 election."

It wasn't until shortly after dawn on Friday that President Trump offered his thoughts, via Twitter, on the Comey hearing. He apparently found much to his liking, proclaiming "total and complete vindication."

On Thursday, #ComeyDay, #ComeyHearings and #JamesComey were among the top hashtags on Twitter and were used nearly 2 million times, according to Brandwatch, a social media analysis platform. Sprout Social, another platform, says there were more than 3.3 million tweets regarding the hearing by 2:30 p.m. Eastern time.

Overall, the sentiment surrounding Comey mentions was nearly 70 percent positive, said Kellan Terry, a Brandwatch analyst.

"This conversation really mirrors our country right now. You have people twisting facts and phrases to suit their own political and ideological beliefs," he said. "One statement made by former director Comey could mean two completely different things to two people depending on their political disposition. Most of the debate I see is social media users latching on to whatever statement suits them."

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The most mentioned Comey-related hashtags on Twitter, according to Brandwatch.

Brandwatch

At one point during the hearing, for example, Comey said, "Lordy, I hope there are tapes" of his nine private conversations with Trump, which could provide corroboration for his testimony. 

That sentiment was shared in a tweet by former US Attorney Preet Bharara, who also was fired by Trump: 

Meanwhile, men accounted for about 54 percent of the conversation on Twitter, Brandwatch's Terry noted. This includes celebrities, such as "Captain America" star Chris Evans urging the president to respond on Twitter:

Originally published June 8 at 10:04 a.m. PT.
Updated June 9 at 6:04 a.m. PT: Added President Trump's Twitter reaction.

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