Trump asks US judge to force Twitter to restart his account
Trump was taken off Twitter in January because his account was used to incite violence.
Before being blocked, Donald Trump had more than 88 million followers on Twitter [source: Getty]
Former US President Donald Trump on Friday asked a Florida federal judge to ask Twitter to restore his account, which the company deleted in January, citing a risk of incitement to violence.
Trump filed for a preliminary injunction against Twitter in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida, arguing that the social media company was “coerced” by members of the U.S. Congress into suspending its account.
Twitter and several other social media platforms banned Trump from their services after a mob of his supporters attacked the U.S. Capitol in a deadly riot on Jan.6.
The assault followed a speech by Trump in which he reiterated false claims that his electoral loss in November was due to widespread fraud, a claim rejected by several courts and state election officials.
Twitter “wields a degree of power and control over political discourse in this country that is immeasurable, historically unprecedented and deeply dangerous for opening up democratic debate,” Trump’s lawyers said on the file. The filing was reported earlier by Bloomberg.
Twitter declined to comment on the case when contacted by Reuters.
Upon deleting Trump’s account for good, Twitter said his tweets violated the platform’s policy of banning the “glorification of violence.” The company said at the time that Trump’s tweets that led to the removal were “very likely” to encourage people to replicate what happened during the Capitol riots.
Before being blocked, Trump had more than 88 million followers on Twitter and used it as his megaphone on social media.
In the court brief, Trump argued that Twitter allowed the Taliban to regularly tweet about their military victories across Afghanistan, but censored it during his presidency by calling his tweets “misleading information” or stating that ‘they violated the rules of the company against the “glorification of violence”.
In July, Trump sued Alphabet Inc‘s Twitter, Facebook Inc and Google, along with their CEOs, alleging they were illegally silencing conservative views.