Donald Trump has had it up to HERE with all these doggone rotten social media companies enabling him to reach hundreds of millions of Americans, and you’d better believe he’s going to do something about it.
On Thursday, the president signed an executive order intended to, at least superficially, intimidate social media companies like Twitter that might dare get in his way. Specifically, Trump seemed incensed that Twitter had on Tuesday fact checked two of his tweets.
While we have yet to see the final text of today’s executive order, we were blessed with hearing Trump’s rambling justification for it.
“There’s no precedent in American history for so small a number of corporations to control so large a sphere of human interaction, and that includes individual people controlling vast amounts of territory and we can’t allow that to happen, especially when they go about doing what they’re doing because they’re doing things incorrectly,” Trump explained.
“They have points of view and if we go by that it’s actually amazing that there was a success in 2016 but we can’t let this continue to happen. It’s very very unfair, and you look at the statistics and you look at what is going on and I think everybody would very much agree with that.”
WATCH: President Trump signed an executive order cracking down on “censorship” by social media sites, a move widely seen by critics as retaliation against Twitter’s decision to slap fact-checking labels on the president’s tweets. https://t.co/ydwFbf2aFN pic.twitter.com/U9WvWqvqo4
— CNBC (@CNBC) May 28, 2020
But wait, he wasn’t done. Trump said there was nothing he’d rather do then “get rid of [his] whole Twitter account” before claiming his social media platforms reach over 180 million people.
Oh yeah, Trump also considered the possibility of shutting Twitter down.
TRUMP: If Twitter were not honorable…I think you shut it down, as far as I’m concerned.
REPORTER: And how would you shut down an American company?
TRUMP: I don’t know. I’d have to ask the lawyers. I’d have to go through a legal process.
— JM Rieger (@RiegerReport) May 28, 2020
In other words, it was all just another normal day in the White House under Trump.
UPDATE: May 28, 2020, 3:03 p.m. PDT: The final text of the executive order has been released, and, well, it doesn’t appear to actually do that much.
It asks federal agencies to request the FCC reconsider the scope of Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act. Joe Biden has also said he wanted to revoke Section 230.