Donald Trump Jr.’s Twitter account was restricted after he posted a video of a doctor claiming hydroxychloroquine ‘cures’ coronavirus.
Twitter has banned Donald Trump Jr. from posting any tweets, claiming he shared ‘potentially harmful information’ after posting a link Monday evening to a viral video of a doctor claiming hydroxychloroquine is a ‘cure’ for coronavirus.
‘We’ve temporarily limited some of your account features,’ the Twitter notice to the president’s eldest son reads, adding it will be in effect for 12 hours.
‘We have determined that this account violated the Twitter Rules. Specifically, for: 1. Violating the policy on spreading misleading and potentially harmful information related to COVID-19,’ it continued.
Andrew Surabian, a spokesman to Don Jr., posted an image of the notice to Twitter Tuesday morning, lamenting: ‘Big Tech is the biggest threat to free expression in America today & they’re continuing to engage in open election interference – full stop.’
The ban comes as Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, Apple CEO Tim Cook, Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg and Sundar Pichai, CEO of Google’s parent company Alphabet, prepare to testify before the House Judiciary Committee on Wednesday.
The hearing will focus on big tech companies and potential antitrust law violations in the industry.
Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey is not on the docket for the hearing Wednesday. While Don Jr.’s account is in this restricted state, he can still send direct messages on the platform and browse Twitter.
He will not, however, be able to tweet, retweet, follow new accounts or like anyone’s tweets.
President Donald Trump also retweeted Monday night two posts of Dr Stella Immanuel’s speech-making dubious claims that the anti-malaria drug, claiming it has successfully cured people of the virus.
While Don Jr. and his spokesperson called Twitter’s move a suspension from using Twitter, the social media platform clarified in a statement Tuesday: ‘We did not suspend the account.’
‘The screenshot shared directly says that Twitter required the Tweet to be deleted because it violated our rules, and that we would limit some account functionality for 12 hours’ a Twitter spokesperson said.
Surabian said he would not accept that explanation.
‘When the features ‘temporarily limited’ are the abilities to tweet and retweet, what would you call that?’ he tweeted in response to Twitter’s statement. ‘Anyone with a functioning brain would call it a suspension, despite the BS word games @Twitter is playing here.’
Videos of Immanuel’s Friday speech, made outside the Capitol building, went viral on Monday – but were removed on Twitter, Facebook and Youtube for spreading misleading information.
The Houston pediatrician demanded the social media platforms reupload her videos, claiming God would crash their computers if they did not repost her speech.
‘Hello Facebook put back my profile page and videos up or your computers with start crashing till you do. You are not bigger that God. I promise you. If my page is not back up face book will be down in Jesus name,’ Immanuel said in a mistake-littered tweet Monday night.
While Immanuel has been embraced by Trump and his supporters, the doctor and religious minister has made some outlandish medical claims in the past.
She has often alleged that gynecological problems, like cysts and endometriosis, are actually caused by people dreaming about having intercourse with demons and witches.
Immanuel also claims scientists are working on a vaccine to prevent people from being born religious and asserts that alien DNA is used in modern-day medical treatments.
Donald Trump Jr. called Immanuel’s viral Friday speech a ‘must watch’ as he posted a link on his Twitter page, causing his account access to be limited by Twitter.
President Trump often lamented that there is social media bias against conservative voices.
‘Twitter suspending Don Jr. for sharing a viral video of medical professionals discussing their views on Hydroxychloroquine is further proof that Big Tech is intent on killing free expression online and is another instance of them committing election interference to stifle Republican voices,’ Don Jr.’s spokesperson Surabian said in a statement on the incident.
‘While there is indeed much disagreement in the medical community about the efficacy of Hydroxychloroquine in treating coronavirus, there have been studies reported on by ‘mainstream’ outlets like CNN, suggesting that it may in fact be an effective treatment,’ he continued. ‘Those pretending otherwise are lying for political reasons.’
‘[I]t is beyond the pale for Twitter to silence someone for sharing the views of medical professionals who happen to dissent with their anti-Hydroxychloroquine narrative,’ Surabian concluded.
Earlier this summer, President Trump also earned his first ever blue exclamation point when Twitter flagged two of his tweets claiming there are heightened instances of voter-fraud with mail-in ballots as ‘misleading.’
Another one of Trump’s tweets was hidden, with a prompt to reveal the contents of it, this summer after he threatened protesters in the Seattle Autonomous Zone with ‘force.’
‘There will never be an Autonomous Zone’ in Washington, D.C., as long as I’m your President,’ Trump tweeted at the time, referring to an area that was occupied by protesters. ‘If they try they will be met with serious force!’
Dr. Anthony Fauci on Tuesday morning also dismissed Trump’s Monday night Twitter rant, which included his post of Dr. Immanuel’s speech along with criticism of Fauci.
‘I don’t know how to address that,’ the nation’s top immunologist told Good Morning America regarding the president’s tweet storm. ‘I’m just going to, certainly, continue doing my job.’
‘I, you know, I don’t tweet, I don’t – I don’t even read them,’ Fauci, 79, told ABC News host George Stephanopoulos. ‘So I don’t really want to go there.’
Trump went on a Twitter frenzy Monday night, including retweets of posts claiming Fauci lied to the country regarding hydroxychloroquine, which the president revealed he has taken as a preventative measure to stop him from contracting coronavirus.
Fauci, a member of the White House Coronavirus Task Force, pushed back Tuesday morning: ‘I have not been misleading the American public under any circumstances.’