Top line

After losing to Joe Biden in the 2020 presidential election last month, Donald Trump lost Twitter followers at an unprecedented rate. In the past two and a half weeks, more than 220,000 accounts have followed the seated president, which is a remarkable drop for a man whose style of leadership has relied heavily – and controversially – on a near-constant tweet storm.

A woman holds up a book of compiled tweets from President Donald Trump prior to a campaign rally for … [+] President Donald Trump at the BOK Center on June 20, 2020 in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Trump is expected to hold his first political rally since the coronavirus pandemic began at the BOK Center on Saturday as infection rates continue to rise in the state of Oklahoma. (Photo by Michael B. Thomas / Getty Images)

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Key factors

According to Factba.se, a website that uses automation software and archived screenshots to measure Trump’s Twitter activity and number of followers, the president hit a maximum follower count of 88,964,791 on November 17th.

Trump’s verified account dates back to November 18th and has seen net losses in terms of followers for 18 straight days.

This is the first time in five years since he announced he was running for president, that Trump has consistently cut his support numbers dramatically.

Before mid-November, the president had never seen a net loss of followers for more than two consecutive days.

Key background:

Trump has used social media like no other politician – both to get in direct contact with supporters and, much more controversially, to regularly spread disinformation. Regardless, it was central to his leadership style to post big news (even when people were laid off) through his account first. Although President-elect Joe Biden is nowhere near Trump in terms of total supporters, his supporter numbers have grown rapidly. Since election day on November 3, the number of his supporters in Biden has increased by more than 40% from 11.8 million to 20.6 million. He gained over 1.5 million new followers in the same 18-day period. Trump lost 220,000 followers. Both are dwarfed by former President Barack Obama, who has an allegiance of more than 125 million.

Tangent:

A Twitter spokesman told Forbes on Thursday that Trump could eventually be banned from their platform. The president is currently protected by Twitter’s World Leaders Policy. This means that while the social media company is tapping warning signs and fact-checking on the president’s posts, it is not banning his account. However, on Jan. 20, Trump will be forced to follow the same guidelines as ordinary citizens or banish the risk.

Big number:

97. In the past two weeks, President Trump has not tweeted a single time about the coronavirus pandemic in the US (despite the fact that Covid-19 killed more than 23,000 Americans during that period), but tweeted 97 times about election fraud.

Further reading:

Twitter Confirms Trump Could Be Banned For Repeated Violations After Inauguration Day (Forbes)

The political world is starting to move away from Trump (NPR)