President Donald Trump's White House has ruined another recent tradition. Instead of making Spanish-language content readily available. like his predecessor, Trump got rid of the director of Hispanic media outreach position entirely, has yet to produce a Spanish White House website and has a Spanish-language Twitter account that is full of grammatical errors.
Since taking office Trump has made a habit of failing to meet his own deadlines. White House press secretary Sean Spicer said in January that the administration's IT employees were "working overtime" in order to produce a Spanish version of the White House website. "Trust me, it’s going to take a little bit more time, but we’re working piece by piece to get that done," Spicer said at the time. However, WhiteHouse.gov/espanol still greets visitors with a "STAY TUNED" message.
The White House's Spanish Twitter account hasn't tweeted in at least a week and is generally far less active than under the Obama administration, according to an Associated Press analysis. "The account has tweeted just 41 times since Trump’s inauguration; more than one-third of those posts came on the day of his address to a joint session of Congress on Feb. 28. Of the 41 tweets, about half were written in English. The Spanish tweets are sprinkled with typos — 11 in all.," the AP reported.
Most of the spelling errors are small, such as missing accents, according to the AP. However, those accents can "often change the meaning of words significantly." But one of the first agencies to publish more Spanish-language content is — not so coincidentally — U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, commonly known as ICE.
The tradition began under former President George W. Bush, his successor Barack Obama continued the trend. The Obama administration also developed things a bit further with the White House website and directed specific topics towards Latinos, rather than just a direct translation, according to the AP.
"For us it was important that all of our constituents across the board were getting as much information as possible about what we were doing," Luis Miranda, director of Hispanic media at the White House during the Obama administration, told the AP.