Donald Trump Jr.’s twitter account was suspended on Tuesday after he posted a video of doctors touting the benefit of hydroxychloroquine in treating COVID-19 patients.
“@Twitter & @jack have suspended @DonaldJTrumpJr for posting a viral video of medical doctors talking about Hydroxychloroquine,” Andrew Surabian, Trump Jr.’s spokesperson, tweeted Tuesday morning.
“Big Tech is the biggest threat to free expression in America today & they’re continuing to engage in open election interference — full stop,” Surabian continued.
Surabian said in a statement that the suspension was “further proof that Big Tech is intent on killing free expression online and is another instance of them committing election interference to stifle Republican voices.
“While there is indeed much disagreement in the medical community about the efficacy of Hydroxychloroquine in treating coronavirus, there have been studies reported on by ‘mainstream’ outlets like CNN, suggesting that it may in fact be an effective treatment. Those pretending otherwise are lying for political reasons,” he continued.
Twitter defended its move, saying on Monday evening the tweet violated “the policy on spreading misleading and potentially harmful information related to COVID-19.”
The Trump administration is taking aim at Silicon Valley for their continual censorship of conservatives on social media platforms.
At President Trump’s direction, the administration is submitting a petition to the FCC for proposed regulatory changes to hold social media companies accountable for their censorship. The petition asks the FCC to end the loophole that allows social media companies to escape civil lawsuits for their own speech, fact checks, and de-platforming. It also seeks to expose social media companies to liability as a speaker or publisher if they act as editors of content on their platform or remove lawful speech based on politics. Additionally, it requests that the FCC keep social media companies honest by mandating transparency of their moderation practices.
The petition follows President Trump’s executive order to uphold free and open debates on online platforms. The executive order:
- Called for the start of a regulatory process to clarify Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act to ensure social media companies are not entitled to immunity when they but engage in deceptive or pretextual censorship on their platforms.
- Specified that social media companies shouldn’t receive liability protections when they act as editors of content on their platform or take down lawful speech based on politics.
Additionally, the White House launched a Tech Bias Reporting tool to allow Americans to report incidents of online censorship, bias, and discrimination. The President also held a White House social media summit, where he called out social media’s censorship and emphasized the importance of free speech in our society.