WASHINGTON (CBS NEWS) — Newly inaugurated President Donald Trump was "directly involved" in the search for the person who, using the official National Park Service account, retweeted side-by-side comparisons of the crowds at Trump's Jan. 20 inauguration ceremony and former President Barack Obama's 2009 ceremony, CBS News has confirmed.
The retweet was deleted soon after it was posted and the Twitter accounts of the National Park Service and other U.S. Interior Department agencies were briefly shut down. White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer told CBS News two days later in an email that the White House neither demanded the retweet be taken down, nor ordered the Interior Department accounts to be suspended.
But emails released by the National Park Service in response to a Freedom of Information Act request reveal that the new president was "concerned" about the retweet.
"Obviously, this has become a very sensitive issue, especially since the President has gotten directly involved and contacted Acting Director Mike Reynolds concerned about one of the images that was retweeted," wrote Tim Cash, Chief of Digital Strategy at the National Park Service in a Jan. 21 email to Shaun Cavanaugh, the agency's Chief Information Security Officer.
The email between Cash and Cavanaugh was first reported on by the news site MuckRock. A White House spokesperson did not return a request for comment about Cash's depiction of Trump's involvement.