A review of Donald Trump's schedule shows that he has not received his "daily intelligence briefing" since the morning after he divulged classified information to Russians in the Oval Office.
As Shareblue has reported previously, Donald Trump has deviated significantly from the intelligence briefing practices of prior administrations.
These sessions — which used to be labeled the “Presidential Daily Brief” or “PDB,” but which the current administration calls the “daily intelligence briefing” — are of debatable value to Trump, as it is not clear whether he pays any attention at all to them. But for whatever they are worth, Trump hasn’t been receiving them since last Thursday.
His last scheduled “daily intelligence briefing” was on May 11, the only event on his schedule that day, and came less than 24 hours after his Oval Office meeting with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and Russian Ambassador and alleged spymaster Sergey Kislyak.
Trump has not received a briefing since then, or since news emerged that Trump had divulged classified information to the Russians during that meeting — which means the Russians may be almost as up to date on our intel as the president is.
In an apples-to-apples comparison on this topic with President Obama’s first three months in office, Trump lags far behind: Through the end of April, Obama had received 58 PDBs, while Trump had received only 44 of his “daily intelligence briefings” over the same time period.
There are significant differences beyond the numbers, though. Obama received and read the PDB every day of his presidency, while Trump can’t be bothered to read anything that doesn’t have his own name in it, or isn’t printed out from an unreliable internet source. And for the first 23 days of Trump’s presidency, those briefings were given to him by disgraced National Security Adviser and literal foreign agent Michael Flynn.
The reasons for this current gap are unclear, although Trump also went a week without briefings following the Flynn firing. While current National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster has doggedly covered for Trump in public, it would fall to him to ensure Trump is briefed, which he is apparently letting slide.
Given Trump’s “disqualifying” carelessness with classified information, the dearth of intel briefings could well be a blessing, but not nearly the blessing that a competent and loyal president would be.