Facebook announced Thursday that it will ban pro-Trump super PAC, The Committee to Defend The President, from buying ads on its platform.
“As a result of the Committee to Defend the President’s repeated sharing of content determined by third-party fact-checkers to be false, they will not be permitted to advertise for a period of time on our platform,” Facebook Policy communications director Andy Stone told FOX Business in a statement.
The page will lose advertising privileges for a minimum of 90 days. The advertising ban will take effect on August 10, and would end around November 1.
Committee chairman Ted Harvey told FOX Business in a statement that Facebook is “determined to restrict free speech and attack those who dare to support President Trump.”
“When their liberal, Trump-hating ‘fact-checkers’ complained about the Committee’s first ad for correctly calling out Joe Biden, we changed it. When those same ‘fact-checkers’ didn’t bother to check the facts or even watch our second ad, they still banned us,” Harvey said. “The Committee will not be silenced by ‘woke’ Silicon Valley elites, as we expose the real Joe Biden. We have reallocated our entire Facebook budget to other online platforms, so Americans can see the whole truth—not just Facebook’s truth.”
The Committee to Defend the President Facebook page has nearly 1 million followers and has spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on ads in the last two years on the social media giant.
The move comes a day after the platform removed a video of President Trump which it said “includes false claims that a group of people is immune from COVID-19 which is a violation of our policies around harmful COVID misinformation.”
In the removed video, the president told Fox & Friends that schools should remain open.
“My view is that schools should be open,” Trump said. “If you look at children, children are almost — and I would almost say definitely — but almost immune from this disease.”
He added that children have “much stronger immune systems” and “just don’t have a problem.”
The post, which was also shared to Twitter by the Trump campaign’s account, was also flagged after being “in violation of the Twitter rules on COVID-19 misinformation.” Twitter told FOX News that the video must be removed from the Trump campaign’s account before it can tweet again.
Trump campaign spokesperson Courtney Parella told Fox News that President Trump was “stating a fact that children are less susceptible to the coronavirus.”
“Another day, another display of Silicon Valley’s flagrant bias against this President, where the rules are only enforced in one direction,” she added. “Social media companies are not the arbiters of truth.”
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Facebook’s policy to block advertising on pages that “repeatedly share stories marked as false” has been in place since 2017.
According to its website, any page that runs “issue, electoral or political ads without authorization, providing false or misleading information in the authorization process, and other ad policy violations may lead to enforcement action.”
Actions the company will take against pages in violation of its policy include disabling associated pages and existing ads, restricting the ability to run new ads and merge pages, and revoking authorization to run issue, electoral or political ads.
Facebook stock closed at $265.28 per share at the end of Thursday’s trading session, up more than 6 percent.