WASHINGTON — Facebook announced on Friday they are extending the ban on former President Donald Trump from all its platforms, including Instagram, for at least the next two years.
Nick Clegg, Facebook’s vice president of global affairs, released a statement and said Trump’s actions “constituted a severe violation of our rules”.
“Given the gravity of the circumstances that led to Mr. Trump’s suspension, we believe his actions constituted a severe violation of our rules which merit the highest penalty available under the new enforcement protocols,” the statement read. “We are suspending his accounts for two years, effective from the date of the initial suspension on January 7 this year.”
The news comes after Facebook’s Oversight Board said last month the social media giant was right to ban the former President the day after the January 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol.
Trump called the move “an insult” in a statement released on Friday.
“They shouldn’t be allowed to get away with this censoring and silencing, and ultimately, we will win. Our country can’t take this abuse anymore!” he said.
Clegg’s announcement tied Trump to the January 6 attack on the Capitol, where mob of his supporters stormed the building to try and disrupt the counting of the electoral votes that would lock in Joe Biden’s win in the 2020 presidential election.
“In establishing the two year sanction for severe violations, we considered the need for it to be long enough to allow a safe period of time after the acts of incitement, to be significant enough to be a deterrent to Mr. Trump and others from committing such severe violations in future, and to be proportionate to the gravity of the violation itself,” Clegg said.
White House press secretary Jen Psaki was asked about the decision and said she doubts Trump will change his ways over the next two years.
“We learned a lot from President Trump, the former president, over the last couple of years about his behavior and how he uses these platforms,” said Psaki. “It feels pretty unlikely that the zebra’s going to change his stripes over the next 2 years.”
At the conclusion of the two year ban, Facebook will have a discussion with experts whether the risk to public safety has receded, said Clegg.