What happened to former President Trump this weekend? It seems that over the weekend quite a few updates popped up on Trump, Twitter, and the DOJ. The sequence of events all started Friday with a hearing on the classified material at his Florida estate. Before continuing onto the Twitter Files and their relation to Trump and his ban from Twitter previous to the Elon Musk takeover.
Friday Federal Judge, Beryl Howell urged lawyers from the Department of Justice and lawyers from Trump’s team to work the matter out on their own, before declining to take action on holding Trump in contempt of court. This was after the DOJ alleged Trump and his team failed to comply with subpoenas, rather they supposedly kept important classified documents in his Mar-o-Lago home.
The events continued when Twitter CEO Elon Musk revealed the third and fourth parts of the so-called “Twitter files.” During the third installment, investigative reporter, Matt Taibbi, revealed the way Trump was targeted for removal from Twitter. Taibbi shared screenshots of Slack messages between himself and other employees discussing the Trump ban. One unnamed executive alleged the “context surrounding” the actions of Trump and his supporters “over the course of the election and frankly last 4+ years” contributed to the ban.
In the fourth part of the files, the reactions of Twitter employees towards the ban on Trump were revealed. The only serious concern on the basis of free speech seemed to have been voiced by a junior employee within the company in a Slack channel buried pretty deep. Insinuating that the bulk of Twitter employees did not mind the unconstitutional wrongness the ban displayed, or how it would look on them. During this fourth installment, it was also revealed by co-releaser Journalist Michael Shellenberger, that the company faced “internal and external” pressure to ban Trump from the site. It was also cited within Shellenberger’s statement that the former first lady Michelle Obama was among those who pressured the company to remove Trump from the site.
After the events of January 6th, Mrs. Obama took to Twitter to discuss the events in which she called for the banning of “this man,” aka Trump.
— Michelle Obama (@MichelleObama) January 7, 2021
While Trump was suspended at the time of this Tweet, he had a “Public-interest exceptions” policy that he kept current with the site, which meant as he was an elected official he would not be banned based on having a high percentage of public interest. Though this was ignored when days later he was in fact banned from the platform.