Facebook Bans Pro-Trump PAC From Advertising, Citing ‘False’ Content

August 7, 2020 Updated: August 7, 2020

Facebook announced Thursday it is banning ads from The Committee to Defend the President, a pro-Trump super PAC, The Hill reports.

A Facebook policy spokesperson, Andy Stone, said in a statement, “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 did not say how long the ban would last. According to Fox Business, the page will lose advertising privileges for a minimum of 90 days. The advertising ban will take effect on Aug. 10, and is set to end around Nov. 1.

The Committee to Defend the President has nearly 1 million followers on Facebook and has invested hundreds of thousands of dollars on ads since 2018.

A statement from its Chairman Ted Harvey on Thursday claimed Facebook’s fact-checkers “restrict free speech” by failing to accurately check their claims.

“Facebook is determined to restrict free speech and attack those who dare to support President Trump,” he wrote. “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 continued, “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 move comes a day after the platform removed a video of President Trump which shows an excerpt from an interview he conducted with Fox News, in which he said that children are “almost immune” to COVID-19, the disease caused by the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus. Facebook was first to remove the post, followed later by Twitter.

Spokesperson Andy Stone said in a statement to news outlets that the video “includes false claims that a group of people is immune from COVID-19 which is a violation of our policies around harmful COVID misinformation.” The spokesperson added that Trump’s comments regarding children being almost immune to the virus had violated Facebook rules.

Facebook’s policy on banning advertisers states that “pages and websites that repeatedly share false news will have some restrictions, including having their distribution reduced. They may also have their ability to monetize and advertise removed, and their ability to register as a news Page removed.” The policy has been in place since 2017.

Mimi Nguyen Ly contributed to this report.