Top line

Both Facebook and Twitter suspended President Donald Trump’s accounts and removed two posts on Wednesday. This is the social media company’s strongest reaction yet to the president after he tweeted support for rioters who stormed the Capitol.

President Donald Trump speaks to supporters during a rally in Newtown on October 31, 2020. … [+] Pennsylvania.

Photo by Mark Makela / Getty Images

Key factors

Facebook and Twitter removed two Trump posts addressing the riots where the president asked the rioters to “go home” but also said he knew their “pain” and added that “this are the things and events that happen when a sacred landslide election victory is so unceremoniously & viciously moved out. “

Twitter said in a statement that Trump’s account will be banned for the next 12 hours, meaning the president won’t be able to tweet until he also removes the tweets himself.

Facebook said Trump would not be able to post on Facebook or Instagram for the next 24 hours because his posts overall help “reduce rather than reduce the risk of persistent violence,” said Guy Rosen, vice president for integrity, earlier Wednesday.

Twitter warned that future violations of its rules, including the company’s policy on citizen integrity or violent threats, “will result in the @ realDonaldTrump account being permanently banned.”

Facebook and Twitter have been following each other throughout the day: Twitter removed Trump’s tweets to Facebook, and Facebook temporarily suspended the president’s account after Twitter took similar action.

Key background

While this isn’t the first time Twitter and Facebook have removed Trump’s posts, it is the most forceful action both companies have taken against the president. Democrats, as well as tech and media celebrities, have criticized both companies’ response to Trump across his administration, saying his posts contribute to misinformation and violence. But the president’s tweets about the riots seem like a breaking point as more and more people are calling on social networks to ban him entirely. Trump, on the other hand, has spent much of the last year revoking social media legal protection, Section 230, believing that big tech is biased against conservatives.