WASHINGTON — Fed up with what he declared efforts to “silence conservatives voices,” President Donald Trump on Wednesday threatened to shut down social media platforms that target Republicans.
The move comes after Twitter added fact-check labels to a pair of Trump’s tweets on Tuesday in which the president claimed there is no way “mail-in ballots will be anything less than substantially fraudulent.” The labels Twitter attached claimed the tweets “contain potentially misleading information about voting processes” and were put in place “to provide additional contest around mail-in ballots.”
“Republicans feel that Social Media Platforms totally silence conservatives voices. We will strongly regulate, or close them down, before we can ever allow this to happen. We saw what they attempted to do, and failed, in 2016,” Trump tweeted in responses to the labeling. “We can’t let a more sophisticated version of that happen again. Just like we can’t let large scale Mail-In Ballots take root in our Country. It would be a free for all on cheating, forgery and the theft of Ballots. Whoever cheated the most would win. Likewise, Social Media. Clean up your act, NOW!!!!”
High profile conservatives have long complained of unjust practices by social media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook, claiming that their accounts were censored, removed from view and unfairly banned.
In an appearance on Fox News, Republican Sen. Josh Hawley complained of special protections put in place to shield tech companies, many of which receive federal funding, from being sued for such practices. “They get this special immunity, this special immunity from suits and from liability that’s worth billions of dollars to them every year. Why are they getting subsidized by federal taxpayers to censor conservatives, to censor people critical of China?”