Trump says repeating someone's vulgarity is 'like a retweet'

The presidential candidate steps into the politics of Twitter. He says repeating an audience member's rude colloquialism aimed at Ted Cruz was like a retweet.

Technically Incorrect offers a slightly twisted take on the tech that's taken over our lives.

Donald Trump. Serial retweeter.

Dennis Van Tine/MediaPunch/Corbis

When you become president, you're not merely the decider. You're the explainer.

This is a role leading Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump was surely born for.

He recently explained how repeating an insult is really no different than a retweet.

On Monday, the last day before the New Hampshire primary, Trump criticized Texas Sen. Ted Cruz's stance on waterboarding during a rally in Manchester. A female member of the audience echoed this criticism and shouted: "He's a pussy."

Trump would surely excoriate her for such language. "She just said a terrible thing," he said to the crowd. "You know what she said?"

He then tried to get her to repeat it. Not done with this opportunity for refined humor, he added: "She said 'He's a pussy.'"

Oh, what comic timing.

Astonishingly, not everyone was amused by this highly on-brand performance.

"It was like a retweet," Trump replied when asked about it on Tuesday, according to Time. "I would never say a word like that."

And there he opened up the debate about Twitter politics.

When you retweet something, does it mean you support it? Some Twitterers insist that "retweets do not constitute endorsements" in their profiles.

Others are a little more sly. For example, some celebrities retweet their more boorish critics, just so the world can see what buffoons they are (or aren't). San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick used to favorite such tweets.

There's always a suspicion that some people use the retweet function in order to promulgate messages that might seem unseemly if they came out of their own mouths.

Donald Trump, for example, has been known to retweet messages that called Fox News presenter Megyn Kelly a "bimbo." He's even blamed an intern for a stray retweet suggesting Iowans have brain problems caused by agrochemical giant Monsanto.

At heart the retweet is a mechanism by which you don't have to utter your own words, instead relying on your audience to understand the true meaning of your retweet.

Trump, indeed, sees Twitter as one of his great advantages over other, less progressive candidates. He uses it fully to excoriate others. The New York Times has even compiled a list of all his Twitter insults.

As for his retweets (verbal or digital), many might feel that his intentions are always clear: every utterance is another step toward making America great again.

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