President Donald Trump signed an executive order regarding social media regulation today after Twitter hit one of his posts with a so-called fact check from the fake news.
“What they choose to fact check and what they choose to ignore or even promote is nothing more than a political activism group… And it’s inappropriate,” Trump said at a press conference before signing the executive order.
“This censorship and bias is a threat to freedom itself. Imagine if your phone company silenced or edited your conversation. Social media companies have vastly more power and more reach than any phone company in the United States,” Trump added.
The president described his executive order as a measure to “protect and uphold the free speech and rights of the American people.” He blasted social media corporations for abusing their special privileges under Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act (CDA), which shields them from liabilities for content posted on their vast platforms.
He claims his executive order will revoke Section 230 protections for tech giants that capriciously censor content to push a partisan political agenda, and empower the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to crack down on fraudulent or deceptive practices by tech corporations.
“What they’re doing is tantamount to monopoly, you can say. It’s tantamount to taking over the airwaves. Can’t let it happen, otherwise we are not going to have a democracy. We’re not going to have anything to do with a Republic,” Trump explained.
While the official text has not been released to the public, a draft of the executive order has been released and contains strong language rebuking the tech giants.
“In a country that has long cherished the freedom of expression, we cannot allow a limited number of online platforms to hand-pick the speech that Americans may access and convey online,” the draft order says. “This practice is fundamentally un-American and anti-democratic. When large, powerful social media companies censor opinions with which they disagree, they exercise a dangerous power.”
The draft of the order also claims that tech firms are “invoking inconsistent, irrational, and groundless justifications to censor or otherwise punish Americans’ speech here at home.”
Trump’s campaign surrogates and biggest supporters in the legislature are applauding his move to finally push back against Orwellian censorship on social media platforms.
“Twitter is engaging in 2020 election interference. They are putting their thumb on the scale,” said Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL), while appearing on Steve Bannon’s podcast War Room Pandemic. “The notion that they would outsource fact checking to people who have been wrong about everything is an insult.”
“We always knew that Silicon Valley would pull out all the stops to obstruct and interfere with President Trump getting his message through to voters,” Trump campaign manager Brad Parscale said in a statement. “Partnering with the biased fake news media ‘fact checkers’ is only a smoke screen Twitter is using to try to lend their obvious political tactics some false credibility.”
“This plays right into President Trump’s hands,” said Jason Miller, who worked as the communications director for Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign. “They basically handed him a massive gift.”
It remains to be seen if Trump’s order will actually have the effect of stopping Big Tech censorship, but it certainly puts the focus on their coordinated push against freedom of expression.
President Donald Trump Pledges “Orderly Transition” on January 20th
“The greatest first term in Presidential history.”
President Donald Trump pledged an orderly transition of power in a statement released early Thursday morning, appearing to recognize that Democrat Joe Biden would be sworn in as President in January.
“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. 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!”
The President’s announcement came minutes after the Senate certified electoral college slates voting for Joe Biden’s history. Vice President Mike Pence recognized Biden as the winner with 306 electoral college votes.
Twitter had temporarily silenced President Trump’s personal Twitter in the wake of a protest outside of the Capitol in which demonstrators entered. the halls of Congress. Longtime Trump aide Dan Scavino released the statement just before 4AM.
The recognition of a transition now heralds the end of President Donald Trump’s first term, with the President alluding to the possibility of securing the second term he was denied in his statement in a future campaign. Joe Biden will be inaugurated as President.
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