Twitter on Friday announced they are permanently suspending President Donald Trump from using the platform, citing the recent violent insurrection on Capitol Hill and Trump’s failure to condemn them.
“After close review of recent Tweets from the @realDonaldTrump account and the context around them — specifically how they are being received and interpreted on and off Twitter — we have permanently suspended the account due to the risk of further incitement of violence,” the company wrote in a statement.
“In the context of horrific events this week, we made it clear on Wednesday that additional violations of the Twitter Rules would potentially result in this very course of action,” the statement continued. “Our public interest framework exists to enable the public to hear from elected officials and world leaders directly. It is built on a principle that the people have a right to hold power to account in the open.”
The company made their assessment based on tweets the president sent out on Friday. Trump was suspended from Twitter for 12 hours on Wednesday after the president sent several tweets in support of the violent mob that had gathered outside of the Capitol.
Twitter cited two tweets in particular, the first of which the president tweeted Friday morning, and read: “The 75,000,000 great American Patriots who voted for me, AMERICA FIRST, and MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN, will have a GIANT VOICE long into the future. They will not be disrespected or treated unfairly in any way, shape or form!!!”
Soon after, Trump tweeted: “To all of those who have asked, I will not be going to the Inauguration on January 20th.”
The tweets, the company wrote, must be “read in the context of broader events in the country and the ways in which the President’s statements can be mobilized by different audiences, including to incite violence, as well as in the context of the pattern of behavior from this account in recent weeks.”
The company found the president to be in violation of their Glorification of Violence policy, which includes, but is not limited to, praising violent acts that could “inspire others to take part in similar acts of violence.”
While some welcomed the president’s announcement that he would not be attending Joe Biden’s inauguration — including the president-elect himself — Twitter found his supporters are viewing the tweet as a further message that Trump does not accept the results of the November election.
“The second Tweet may also serve as encouragement to those potentially considering violent acts that the Inauguration would be a “safe” target, as he will not be attending,” the company added.
Later Friday, Trump posted to the official @POTUS account, railing against Twitter and accusing the company of colluding with Democrats to remove his account. He teased the possibility of launching his own platform, as well as “negotiating with various other sites” to carry his message.
Twitter quickly removed the messages.
Trump and the social media giant had long butted heads, as the president took issue with the company’s decision to flag his fraudulent claims about widespread issues in the voting system. Twitter had for months been consistently marking the president’s tweets about election fraud as false, culminating in Wednesday’s suspension and, ultimately, the president’s ban from the platform.
With Twitter no longer at his fingertips, the president has lost one of his final and most-often-used outlets to share his thoughts with the world. Trump is currently also “indefinitely” banned from posting on Facebook and Instagram, CEO Mark Zuckerberg said on Thursday.
Zuckerberg said the risk of allowing Trump to use the platform is too great following the president’s incitement of a pro-Trump mob that caused a deadly riot in the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday.
“We believe the risks of allowing the President to continue to use our service during this period are simply too great,” Zuckerberg wrote in a Facebook post. "Therefore, we are extending the block we have placed on his Facebook and Instagram accounts indefinitely and for at least the next two weeks until the peaceful transition of power is complete.
Social media companies have been under intensified pressure to crack down on hate speech since a violent mob egged on by Trump stormed the Capitol. Dozens of QAnon social media accounts were hyping up Trump’s Jan. 6 rally in the heart of Washington, expressing hope that it could lead to the overturn of the election results.
On Friday, the advocacy coalition Stop Hate for Profit launched a campaign to pressure the major platforms, including YouTube owner Google, to kick Trump off their services for good. The organization, which includes the Anti-Defamation League, the NAACP, the National Hispanic Media Coalition, Free Press and Color of Change, said it will call for an advertiser boycott if the platforms don’t take action by Jan. 20, the date of President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration.
Last summer, the coalition organized a monthlong ad boycott of Facebook that ultimately involved hundreds of companies to push for more assertive action on hate speech at the social network.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.