Donald Trump, the former President of the United States, has filed a lawsuit against Twitter in Florida to get him reinstated. He claims that the ban on platforms violates the First Amendment as well as Florida's new social media law.
According to a complaint filed in the Southern District of Florida on Friday, Trump seeks a preliminary injunction against Twitter's ban. According to a complaint filed in the Southern District of Florida late Friday, Trump is seeking a preliminary injunction against Twitter's ban. He claims that Twitter was coerced into censoring him and describes the social media platform a major avenue for public discourse.
The complaint alleges that Twitter has a level of control and power over the political discourse in this country that is unprecedented and dangerously dangerous for open democratic discussion. His @RealDonaldTrump account was used by the former president to announce policy and personnel decisions, often to the shock of agencies involved, criticize political enemies and spread misinformation regarding election results.
Twitter banned @RealDonaldTrump permanently in January, just two days after the January 6th riot at Capitol Building by pro-Trump supporters trying to stop the certification of Joe Biden's win in 2020's presidential election. Twitter initially placed a 12-hour ban upon the account of the former president for violating our Civic Integrity policy repeatedly and severely. He posted tweets claiming that the election had been stolen. Two days later, the platform made the ban permanent. After the January 6th riots, other social media platforms like YouTube, Snapchat, and Facebook also ban the former president. Later, the decision was upheld by Facebook's Oversight Board.
The Twitter account @RealDonaldTrump had more than 88,000,000 followers at the time it was banned
Trump claims that his Twitter account has become an important source for news and information about government affairs. He also claimed that it was a digital townhall where the former president shared his views. Trump had 88 millions Twitter followers at the time of the ban. Trump also claims that Twitter censored Trump during his presidency by calling some of his tweets misleading information. This was in violation of its rules against glorifying violence.
Trump's complaint also mentions Florida's new social media law. This law prohibits social media companies knowingly deplatforming political figures and requires platforms to apply censorship and deplatforming standards consistently. Gov. Ron DeSantis signed this law in May. However, a federal judge stopped it from taking effect in July. The DeSantis administration appeals this decision.
Trump also claimed that Twitter had applied its COVID-19 rules inconsistently to disapprove of government actors who generally supported the January 6th riot but not the summer protests. Numerous reports showed no increase in COVID-19 incidences in cities that had large protests during the summer 2020. It was noted that outdoor masking likely kept cases down.
Twitter did not comment on Saturday.