But it is the
The tweet stated that "
The NWS tweet contradicted one sent earlier in the day by Trump stating that "In addition to
Since then, the Trump administration has spent a significant amount of time defending the president's assertion that
The controversy escalated on Friday when the
Sobien was among the first to react to the
"Let me assure you the hard working employees of the NWS had nothing to do with the utterly disgusting and disingenuous tweet sent out by
His tweet has 62,400 likes and has been retweeted 17,100 times.
Having investigated the issue, Sobien is confident that "what the
The issue is vitally important because confidence in the work of federal meteorologists -- who warn the public about severe weather ranging from hurricanes to tornadoes and blizzards -- is a life and death matter, Sobien said. If people don't trust forecasters, they might not heed their warnings.
"That could cost people's lives if there's no confidence in our warning system," Sobien said.
The last few days have been a whirlwind for Sobien. He has done multiple media interviews and was in
On Monday, the head of the
According to the
"They did what any office would do," Uccellini said. "With an emphasis they deemed essential, they shut down what they thought were rumors. They quickly acted to reassure their partners, the media and the public -- with strong language -- that there was no threat."
Uccellini and Sobien both emphasized that the
The employees were simply responding to an "onslaught" of public inquiries, Sobien said.
"Without knowing about the tweet, I guess the
"The NWS Forecaster(s) corrected any public misunderstanding in an expert and timely way, as they should," McLean wrote in an email to employees obtained by the
Sobien has worked at the NWS office in
"I have been in the federal government for 28 years and I have never seen anything like that," he said of
"It's imperative ... that people respect the authority, that they're getting the best information that they can and it's not politicized," Sobien said. "There really is no place for politics in science."
(c)2019 Sarasota Herald-Tribune, Fla.
Visit Sarasota Herald-Tribune, Fla. at www.heraldtribune.com
Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.