Twitter And Facebook Block Donald Trump After He Told Capitol Rioters: 'We Love You'

Katie O'Malley
·6-min read
Photo credit: Anadolu Agency - Getty Images
Photo credit: Anadolu Agency - Getty Images

From ELLE

President Donald Trump might find himself at a loss as to what to do on the Internet today following Twitter and Facebook's suspension of his accounts after he shared messages of support to those attacking the US capitol.

On Thursday morning, the US Congress certified Joe Biden's presidential election victory on November 3 after several hours of unrest in and around the Capitol building. The riots began on Wednesday and resulted in the death of four individuals, reports the BBC.

Earlier on Wednesday, Trump addressed a ‘Save America Rally’ outside the White House during which he encouraged his supporters to head to the Capitol. ‘Our country has had enough and we will not take it anymore,’ he told the crowd.

Capitol attackers directly targeted the joint session of Congress being held on Wednesday afternoon to certify Biden's victory. Their actions resulted in the deployment of National Guard troops, FBI agents and US Secret Service to stop the chaos. A citywide curfew was declared by the city mayor Muriel Bowser from 18:00 to 06:00.

Photo credit: Samuel Corum - Getty Images
Photo credit: Samuel Corum - Getty Images

In social media posts sent by the 45th president of the US, he seemingly endorsed the rioters who took over Capitol Building in support him and repeated false claims about election fraud.

While he urged the rioters to 'go home' he also called them 'very special' and said 'we love you'.

Photo credit: Twitter
Photo credit: Twitter

As a result of Trump’s posts, Twitter said it ‘required the removal of three’ of his tweets for ‘repeated and severe violations of our Civic Integrity policy’.

The social media platform later said it would lock Trumps’ account for 12 hours following the removal of the tweets. ‘Future violations of the Twitter Rules... will result in permanent suspension of the @realDonaldTrump account,’ it noted on its account.

Facebook and Instagram have also banned Trump on the platforms for 24 hours, with Facebook noting its response to the Capitol siege: ‘We are appalled by the violence at the Capitol today.’

‘We made the decision that on balance these posts contribute to, rather than diminish, the risk of ongoing violence,’ Facebook stated. ‘We’re continuing to monitor the situation and will take additional measures if necessary to keep people safe.’

Meanwhile, The Verge reports that YouTube has removed a video of Trump addressing rioters from the White House and videos that promote violence or show people carrying firearms. Facebook has also removed the clip.

Trump told those attacking the Capitol building in the clip: ‘I know your pain. I know you're hurt. We had an election that was stolen from us. It was a landslide election, and everyone knows it, especially the other side. But you have to go home now. We have to have peace.’

Farshad Shadloo, a spokesperson for YouTube, told Recode of the removal of videos that go against their guidelines: ‘Our teams are working to quickly remove livestreams and other content that violates our policies, including those against incitement to violence or regarding footage of graphic violence.'


Photo credit: Erin Schaff - Getty Images
Photo credit: Erin Schaff - Getty Images

Snapchat has also prevented him Mr Trump from creating new posts for the time being, reports the BBC.

As a result of the social media blocking, Dan Scavino, White House director of social media, took to Twitter to publish a statement on behalf of the President.

‘Even though I totally disagree with the outcome of the election, and the facts bear me out, nevertheless there will be an orderly transition on January 20th,’ he tweeted

‘I have always said we would continue our fight to ensure that only legal votes were counted. While this represents the end of the greatest first term in presidential history, it's only the beginning of our fight to Make America Great Again!’

This isn't the first time in recent weeks social media platforms have taken action against Trump.

Following Biden's win, Trump claimed he had, in fact, won the race and threatened to go to the Supreme Court over unsubstantiated voter fraud claims. He shared his baseless allegations of fraud, claiming that the Republicans 'are up BIG' but 'they' - seemingly referring to Biden and the Democrats - 'are trying to STEAL the Election [sic]'.

Twitter subsequently issued a warning in the form of a disclaimer (on a tweet in which he misspelt the word 'polls') which reads: 'Some or all of the content shared in this Tweet is disputed and might be misleading about an election or other civic process.'

In response to the Capitol breach, Biden told the US public in a televised address: ‘To storm the Capitol, to smash windows, to occupy offices on the floor of the United States Senate, rummaging through desks, on the House of Representatives, threatening the safety of duly elected officials. It's not protest; it's insurrection.’

Former President Barack Obama said the day was a ‘as a moment of great dishonour and shame for our nation'.

Former US President George W Bush noted: ‘It is a sickening & heartbreaking sight. This is how election results are disputed in a banana republic - not our democratic republic,' the Independent reports.

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