President Donald Trump has accused Twitter of not only ‘stifling free speech’ but also interfering in the November election.
Trump was reacting to Twitter’s fact-check on two tweets he wrote about mail-in-ballots.
It was the first time that the social media platform would flag the U.S. President who commands 80 million followers.
The tweets, said Twitter spokesperson Katie Rosborough, “contain potentially misleading information about voting processes and have been labeled to provide additional context around mail-in ballots.”
But Trump fired back on Tuesday night in two tweets:
“@Twitter is now interfering in the 2020 Presidential Election. They are saying my statement on Mail-In Ballots, which will lead to massive corruption and fraud, is incorrect, based on fact-checking by Fake News CNN and the Amazon Washington Post.
“Twitter is completely stifling FREE SPEECH, and I, as President, will not allow it to happen!”, Trump said.
Trump campaign manager Brad Parscale had responded with the same sentiment: “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.
“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.“
Washington Post reported that for its 14-year existence, Twitter has allowed misinformation by world leaders and everyday citizens to spread virtually unchecked.
“Its leaders have long said that users would engage in debate on the platform and correct false information on their own.
“But Trump has made dozens of false claims on social media, particularly on his preferred medium of Twitter, and has also attacked people in ways that critics have argued could violate company policies on harassment and bullying”, the paper said.
Twitter’s actions come on a day when it was facing a barrage of criticism over another set of Trump tweets.
Earlier on Tuesday, the widower of a former staffer to Joe Scarborough asked Twitter chief executive officer Jack Dorsey to delete tweets by President Trump furthering a baseless conspiracy theory about the staffer’s wife’s death.
The company is debating whether to take action on the Scarborough tweets, said a person familiar with the discussions.