Donald Trump may be an early riser, but the president prefers to spend his time watching television and tweeting rather than working, resulting in fewer hours spent working than any modern president.
Trump is famous for his sleep schedule, with the president claiming he needs only three hours of sleep each night. That is evident to anyone who follows the president’s Twitter page, as he often goes on tirades in the very early morning hours.
But a new report from Axios found that Trump’s actual work day has been dwindling since he took office, to the point that Trump now does not start his workday until 11 a.m. and returns to his private White House quarters at 6 p.m. — meaning he works fewer hours than the average American employee. At the start of his presidency, Trump began his day earlier, taking business breakfast meetings with cabinet members and often business leaders. But he has taken to filling his schedule with what is listed as “executive time,” which Axios reported is usually filled with television, tweeting, and relaxing in his private residence inside the White House.
That puts Trump far behind his predecessors. Barack Obama started his work day between 9 a.m. and 10 a.m., and George W. Bush was usually in his office by 6:45 a.m., the Independent reported. Bill Clinton had an even more hectic schedule, with HuffPost noting that Clinton would be at work of all hours of the day and night — which took a great toll on his staff.
There appears to be no comparison to Trump’s light schedule in modern history — and likely the history of the presidency, as well. George H.W. Bush was known for his strict schedule and early work day. Ronald Reagan had a famous work ethic as well.
The White House has pushed back against reports that Donald Trump has a short workday. Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders argued that Trump’s “executive time” is filled with important presidential duties. But Trump has been caught padding his schedule in the past. In a tweet on Christmas night, Trump declared that it was “back to work” for him the next day, but instead, cameras caught Trump going golfing during that day. He went golfing for seven straight days after declaring that he was headed back to work, HuffPost noted.