Kamala Harris

Kamala Harris Demands That Warren Promise To Ban Trump From Twitter

The California senator has asked CEO Jack Dorsey to delete Trump's account.

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When it comes to politics, Democratic presidential hopeful Sen. Kamala Harris (D–Calif.) is "For The People." When it comes to Twitter, though, she would like to put the fate of President Donald Trump's account in the hands of one powerful man: CEO Jack Dorsey.

"He and his account should be taken down," said Harris during Tuesday night's debate, facing off against Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D–Mass.) who declined to support the move.

Harris made her original case in an October 1 letter to the tech CEO. "These are blatant threats. We need a civil society, not a civil war," Harris wrote, referring to Trump's noxious tweets about the Ukraine call whistleblower. "These tweets represent a clear intent to baselessly discredit the whistleblower and officials in our government who are following the proper channels to report allegations of presidential impropriety, all while making blatant threats that put people at risk and our democracy in danger."

As Reason's Elizabeth Nolan Brown points out, Trump's tweets "are many things—irresponsible, divisive, and unbecoming of a president, to say the very least. His posts accusing Schiff of treason and suggesting he should be arrested (for comments Schiff made on the House floor recently) may even be unconstitutional."

So how should Trump be held accountable for his tweets, many of which could merit support for impeachment? Should lawmakers be able to access them? Should the American people be allowed to decide what they think of his erratic rants, many of which contain policy prescriptions? Or should one man have the power to press a button and erase it all?

Certainly not the latter.

There are plenty of First Amendment implications here. It's true that private companies are under no obligation to provide anyone a platform on which to speak—a point I have made on multiple occasions. For instance, Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D–Hawaii) currently has a nonsensical lawsuit filed against Google; she accused the company of violating her free speech rights when it temporarily froze her campaign fundraising account after the first Democratic debate. The First Amendment prohibits the government from suppressing speech, not corporations.

But it is for that same reason that Harris's request is absurd; she is a senator seeking the highest office in the land. Meanwhile, she is pressuring someone to block the president's speech.

What's more, if Harris had it her way, conservatives would have endless fodder for their claims of tech censorship, which have been a thorn in Democrats' sides as they try to fend off Republican attempts to regulate speech online. With Trump offline, Twitter wars might die down—a victory Harris could claim.

Yet the ideological wars would only grow in size. Not only would a major tech platform have removed a sitting president's account, but it would have come at a liberal government official's behest.

NEXT: The Big Tech Boogeyman Took Another Unfair Beating in the Democratic Debate

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  1. I cant decide who is more unlikable between Beto, Warren, and Harris.

    1. Yes.

      1. So … don’t decide … just dislike all of them.

        1. Like a participation trophy, no rule says they can’t all be tied for last on your like list.

    2. Throw Binion in there

      1. You mean the child of Ilya Somin and Shikha?

        1. No, the one who owns the casino in Vegas with $1 million in cash in the lobby.

    3. It’s close, but I vote Harris.

      1. She really is the absolute worst among them all.

  2. “”These tweets represent a clear intent to baselessly discredit the whistleblower and officials in our government who are following the proper channels to report allegations of presidential impropriety, all while making blatant threats that put people at risk and our democracy in danger.””

    So, everyone else can do it, but not Trump?
    I don’t understand her angle.

    1. She’s a corrupt former prosecutor with a history of abusing power. That’s her angle.

    2. I finally figured out who she reminds me of: people who don’t know squat about a game, be it cards or Monopoly™ or chess or any computer game, but they want people to pay attention to them,not the stupid game, so they feign just enough interest to get in the game, and then fuck around, snack, wander around looking at book shelves and bathroom medicine cabinets and out the window, and barely manage to make it back to the game for their turn.

      She has zero interest in anything except being the center of attention. She made it this far by being that rarity, a black female lawyer, the bets looking Attorney General in the country, like those dipsy cheerleaders who don’t know anything except who the cute quarterback is.

      She might in some ways be the safest President, simply because she’d be so aimless, she’d make Donald Fuckin Trump look like a homing pigeon. And all her entourage would be fighting over whose policies to whisper in her ear today, so they’d probably be harmless too.

  3. She wants to ban Trump from Twitter, who isn’t allowed to block people from his account, and wants to put young men in jail.

    The only way this thot’s getting in the White House is if she becomes Biden or Trump’s sidepiece.

    1. She does has experience working under important male politicians.

  4. Should the American people be allowed to decide what they think of his erratic rants, many of which contain policy prescriptions? Or should one man have the power to press a button and erase it all?
    Certainly not the latter.

    Can I point out that twitter is not a government entity and one man can ban him?

    1. You can, but that merely shows you didn’t RTFA.

      1. He is correct that one man does have that power already, though.

  5. I’m glad to see the Democratic candidates are writing strongly worded letters to the biggest tech company CEOs.

    1. It’s a good thing Section 230 guarantees free speech on the internet so that no politician could ever pressure a tech monopoly into suppressing political speech they dislike.

      1. Steyn and National Review would like a word.

      2. If I were you I’d be banging my wife and not posting on Reason.

  6. Did you notice that in coming to Ohio, Harris acquired the folksy country accent that Obama used in those situations?

    1. To notice that, I would have to watch a bunch of politicians talking. No, thank you.

    2. No, but I’m not surprised. Seems to be standard among the more cynically power hungry democrats.
      The funniest is to go back and see Hillary talking with a southern accent when Bill Clinton ran for president.

      1. Does Kamala carry hot sauce in her purse now?

  7. I’m pretty certain that Twitter works by making everyone who uses it seem like an absolute lunatic and/or piece of human garbage. It’s by no means limited to Trump. I suspect there is some kind of esoteric code in the platform that actually switches on the idiocy genes of its users and makes them humiliate themselves.

  8. “There are plenty of First Amendment implications here.”

    Merely implications?

    1. “Implications” seems about right. Harris doesn’t have the power to actually pressure Twitter, and doesn’t look like she will be winning any powerful position anytime soon.

      1. She is implying that she thinks the president has the power to ban a individual from a platform or at least should have that power.

  9. Trump using a platform to express free speech is concerning. The next president of the United States personally intervening to get people banned from a platform is an unfortunate yet perfectly understandable reaction to Trump. The solution is to give more immunity to an online publishing oligopoly, of course.

  10. Pro-tip for Billy Binion: quoting ENB does not strengthen argument. Some would say, it has the opposite effect.

    1. Well, he didn’t quote Dalmia at least.

  11. If Sen. Kamala Harris (D–Calif.) call to ban Trump from Twitter comes to past then political adds will have lost its freedom. Her reasoning as I understand is that these are lies. Now if “these lies” are to be ban then why not all lies? But that would take in just about everything a politician says would be banned. If lies are ban from Twitter then should it not be banned from all media?

  12. Let’s say Trump is banned from Twitter. What will the practical result be? His followers won’t disappear and he won’t stop saying the things that lefties pee their panties over. Shit, his followers will just post what he says.

    Besides, how will lefties survive if they don’t have Trump tweets to whine about? Fuck, they may have to go out and get jobs!

    1. I suppose they could spend the time learning to code?

  13. “The California senator has asked CEO Jack Dorsey to delete Trump’s account.”

    Good thinking.
    But let’s not stop there.
    Let’s delete everyone’s account just to be on the safe side.
    Free speech is intrinsically evil and should never be allowed by the utnermenschen.
    If free speech is tolerated, then the masses might insist on due process.
    Then what?
    Gun ownership?
    If you give the peasants in this country an inch, they’ll take a mile.
    It’s better to suppress all freedoms now before something bad happens…like liberty for all.

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