Facebook’s oversight board voted on Wednesday to uphold the platform’s ban on former President Donald Trump’s ability to post content. The decision was originally made on January 7, following the violent riots at the Capitol that occurred in protest of the results of the 2020 election.
Facebook originally did not give a firm timeline for the president’s ban, but agreed on Wednesday that it will be upheld for 6 more months before being reviewed. Republicans overwhelmingly slammed the platform’s move to suppress speech, and called for antitrust reform.
The frontrunner for the Republican nomination in Pennsylvania’s upcoming Senate race, Jeff Bartos, joined GOP lawmakers’ criticism of Facebook’s decision and warned of a “very slippery path” if this is the standard for censorship.
“Big Tech has been censoring conservative content, shadow banning Republicans, and now, Facebook has upheld their indefinite ban on President Trump. This is exactly what’s wrong with the system. Big Tech is acting like a Democrat Super PAC and silencing any voice the left disagrees with," Bartos told Townhall. "This is the beginning of a very slippery path. How long before cable companies stop airing Fox News? How long before cell providers cancel coverage for private citizens they disagree with? Facebook and Twitter must reinstate President Trump immediately.”
Facebook isn’t even hiding the fact that it operates more like a Democrat Super PAC than a private company.— Jeff Bartos (@jeff_bartos) May 5, 2021
Big Tech is out of control and free speech is at risk.
Can’t wait to get to the Senate in a Republican majority so we can bring Big Tech to heel. https://t.co/2A5wcxQLmx
Trump targeted Big Tech companies’ suppression of speech last May by directing the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to clarify platforms’ ability to moderate and editorialize content. House and Senate Republicans have introduced various pieces of legislation to reform Section 230 and hold Big Tech companies accountable for censorship of conservative viewpoints.