Trump reportedly isn't even reading his intelligence briefings anymore

Donald Trump.
(Image credit: MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)

If his briefing habits are any indication, it's likely President Trump is more of an audiobook guy.

Trump has instructed his staff not to provide him written intelligence briefings, The Washington Post reported Friday, because he "rarely if ever reads" them. Instead, Trump indicated that he'd rather be updated on the intelligence matters du jour through "an oral briefing of select intelligence issues."

Traditionally, presidents receive a daily intelligence rundown known as the President's Daily Brief. All seven of Trump's direct predecessors have availed themselves of one, the Post notes, as it "lays out the most pressing information collected by U.S. intelligence agencies from hot spots around the world."

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But officials "familiar with" Trump's morning briefings said that oral briefings are the most effective way to relay intelligence information because of his "famously short attention span," the Post explains. Rather than a supplementary written document, the oral briefings are "augmented with photos, videos, and graphics," the Post reports. And even the oral briefings are happening less frequently than usual: "The sessions have been taking place about every two to three days on average in recent months," the Post reports, per schedules released by the White House.

Aides to the White House dispute that the briefings are lacking, saying Trump is briefed in person "nearly every day." Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats denied to the Post that the president was neglecting his briefings, claiming that if anything, "President Trump engages for significantly longer periods than I understand many previous presidents have done."

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