Twitter Suspends Trump, But The Damage Cannot Be Undone

In reaction to Twitter announcing it has permanently suspended President Trump’s account, key Common Cause leaders and experts issued the following statements:


Statement of Karen Hobert Flynn, president of Common Cause:

“It was past time for Twitter to permanently suspend President Trump’s account. After more than four years of the president spreading disinformation, amplifying hateful rhetoric, and inciting violence to the point of which an insurrection occurred in the U.S. Capitol, the damage has been done.”


Statement of Yosef Getachew, director of media and democracy at Common Cause:

“While Twitter has permanently suspended President Trump, Facebook and Youtube have implemented half measures that give him future opportunities to exploit their platforms to spread disinformation. These platforms’ actions are inadequate. Time and time again, President Trump has broken social media platforms’ civic integrity and content moderation policies with impunity. His accounts must be permanently banned across all social media platforms.”   

“Trump is just a symptom of disinformation and hate speech that has spread across social media. Platforms must consistently enforce and expand their civic integrity and content moderation policies. In many cases, disclaimers and labels are not enough and not working. Platforms must take aggressive action, including deleting content and banning accounts as appropriate. Platforms cannot give any individual, regardless if they are a private or public figure, free pass after free pass before finally enforcing their rules.”

“Our safety, security, and democracy are too important to be blindly trusted by social media companies. It is long past time for federal and state lawmakers to enact policies that address the problems posed by social media platforms.”


Statement of Jesse Littlewood, vice president of campaigns at Common Cause, who directed the Election Protection anti-disinformation monitoring project:

“President Trump’s Twitter account was a consistent source of disinformation before, during, and after the election. President Trump may now be blocked from Twitter, but his lies about the integrity of our elections have already damaged our democracy and resulted in an avoidable tragedy at the U.S. Capitol. Twitter itself now acknowledges that plans for future armed protests have begun spreading on its platform. If law enforcement, lawmakers, and social media platforms – including Twitter – had acted on the recommendations of civil rights organization and academic experts in the field earlier, this physical attack on our democracy this week could have been prevented.”


In November 2020, Common Cause and the Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights previously called on Twitter to suspend Trump’s account for his repeated violations of Twitter’s Civic Integrity Policy by spreading disinformation about the 2020 election to millions of Twitter users online. To read the November 2020 letter sent to Twitter, click here.

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