Twitter has said it has made a permanent decision to close his account, but Kari Paul reports for us that Facebook is yet to decide whether to continue hosting Donald Trump:
Facebook is expected to announce imminently whether it will allow Donald Trump to return to the platform after banning him more than a month ago.
The decision will be the most consequential yet made by Facebook’s Oversight Board, a group of 20 members who range from humanitarian activists and religious experts to lawyers and a former prime minister. The board, which launched in late 2020, is meant to function as an independent arm of the social platform, making binding decisions on a selection of its thorniest content moderation issues.
Trump was removed on 7 January following his encouragement of an insurrection of the US Capitol the day prior, but he had for years used his Facebook account to share misinformation and violent rhetoric with his millions of followers. Hundreds of civil rights advocates submitted comments in advance of the decision saying that reinstating Trump’s account would again allow those problems to flourish on the site.
“The Board must acknowledge that Trump’s social media presence has made not just Facebook users but the entire world less safe,” wrote Change the Terms, a coalition of more than 60 human rights groups. “It must act in defense of the people we represent and not reverse Facebook’s decision on a process foul.”
Another prominent voice in favor of a permanent Trump ban is Facebook’s former security chief Alex Stamos, who signed a letter along with a number of other prominent voices urging against Trump’s return.
“The eventual deplatforming of Trump’s accounts helped defuse a dangerous and antidemocratic situation,” said the letter sent by a group of researchers and lawyers including Stamos. “Trump’s actions justified the step of indefinitely deplatforming him.”
Read more of Kari Paul’s report here: Debate rages as Facebook prepares to say whether Trump can return
If the 2024 Republican presidential primary was held today, Donald Trump would win by a street. That was the message from a Politico-Morning Consult poll released on Tuesday, three days after Trump’s acquittal in his second impeachment trial, on a charge of inciting the insurrection at the US Capitol on 6 January.
Among Republican voters, 59% said they wanted Trump to play a prominent role in their party, up a whopping 18 points from the last such poll, taken in the aftermath of the Capitol riot. A slightly lower number, 54%, said they would back Trump in the primary.
Name recognition is a powerful force so far out from the contest concerned. Donald Trump Jr shared third place, with 6%, with former South Carolina governor and United Nations ambassador Nikki Haley. Haley has tried to distance herself from Trump since the Capitol riot.
“We need to acknowledge he let us down,” Haley told Politico shortly after the attack. “He went down a path he shouldn’t have, and we shouldn’t have followed him, and we shouldn’t have listened to him. And we can’t let that ever happen again.”
She also said Trump was “not going to run for federal office again”. Trump has not committed either way. After his acquittal, he told supporters: “Soon we will emerge with a vision for a bright, radiant and limitless American future.”