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Trump claims he is hard at work during ‘Executive Time’

To the long list of superlatives he uses to describe himself, Donald Trump on Sunday added a new one: He would now have us believe that he’s the hardest working president ever.

Even a casual news consumer could be forgiven for finding the assertion more than a little confusing.

Trump, after all, is the president who has come to be known for the number of days he can be found playing golf at a Trump-affiliated resort, and the weeks he has frittered away at his Florida resort Mar-a-Lago. Also often noted is the relatively large number of days when the president’s calendar seems oddly devoid of official engagements.

A report in Axios just last week wrote that Trump spends the bulk of his day on “executive time” — unstructured time when little actual discernible work actually gets done.

Axios, which obtained three months of the president’s private schedules, learned that about 60 percent of Trump’s time is spent in the White House residence occupied by such weighty activities as watching television, making phone calls, and reading the newspapers.

That record suggests a president who actually works less than his predecessors — far less, in fact, than the average hardworking American.

But the president would ask that you not believe your lying eyes. He is not, he insisted on Twitter, the least hard working US president, but quite possibly among the most industrious.

“The media was able to get my work schedule, something very easy to do, but it should have been reported as a positive, not negative,” the president tweeted. “When the term Executive Time is used, I am generally working, not relaxing. In fact, I probably work more hours than almost any past President.”

And in case the first tweet was not entirely convincing, Trump followed up with a second one.

“………The fact is, when I took over as President, our Country was a mess. Depleted Military, Endless Wars, a potential War with North Korea, V.A., High Taxes & too many Regulations, Border, Immigration & HealthCare problems, & much more. I had no choice but to work very long hours!”

News reports said the White House has launched an exhaustive search for the source of the embarrassing internal leak of the president’s calendar.

His critics suggested it might not be the worst thing that he’s not at work all that much, since it means less time spent ordering troops to the US-Mexico border or holding tete-a-tetes with leaders of foreign pariah states.

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