White House vows to ignore Trump if Facebook reinstates him
The Facebook Oversight Board has upheld the platform’s decision to ban Donald Trump for posts related to the attack on the US Capitol in January by his supporters.
An independent group that reviews the company’s most complex issues, the oversight panel also found that the platform was wrong to ban Mr Trump “indefinitely”, and insists that the company “apply and justify a defined penalty” – giving it six months to review its initial decision.
Mr Trump has reacted to the news with fury, demanding that “these corrupt social media companies must pay a political price”.
For its part, the White House says that social media companies have a responsibility to combat the spread of misinformation.
“The president’s view is that the major platforms have a responsibility related to the health and safety of all Americans to stop amplifying untrustworthy content, misinformation, disinformation – especially related to Covid-19, vaccines and elections,” press secretary Jen Psaki said on Wednesday.
Meanwhile, Liz Cheney’s days in the House GOP leadership look to be numbered, with her immediate senior Steve Scalise officially coming out against her.
Mr Trump released another statement attacking Ms Cheney as throwing his support behind Elise Stefanik as the new party conference chair.
Biden bemused by GOP infighting over Liz Cheney
Clara Hill reports for The Independent.
Oliver O’Connell5 May 2021 20:17
US to support vaccine IP waiver proposal
US Trade Representative Katherine Tai says in a statement that the US supports vaccine patent waivers.
“The administration believes strongly in intellectual property protections, but in service of ending this pandemic, supports the waiver of those protections for Covid-19 vaccines,” she said.
Oliver O’Connell5 May 2021 20:12
Biden: ‘Mini-revolution’ in Republican Party
“It seems as though the Republican Party is trying to identify what it stands for,” says Joe Biden. “I think Republicans are further away from trying to figure out who they are and what they stand for than I thought they would be at this point.”
The president referred to what is going on in the GOP as a “mini-revoluton”.
He also reacted to Mitch McConnell saying that “100%” of his focus is on stopping this administration: “He said that about the last administration — about Barack, that he was going to stop everything.”
Oliver O’Connell5 May 2021 20:00
‘History will not be kind’ to Bill Barr
The US Department of Justice has been ordered to release a memo that former US Attorney General William Barr used to avoid prosecuting Donald Trump for obstruction of justice following an investigation by special counsel Robert Mueller.
US District Court Judge Amy Berman Jackson accused Mr Barr of being “disingenuous” about his assessment of Mr Mueller’s findings and found that the Justice Department’s obfuscations misled the public and Congress about the investigation
Oliver O’Connell5 May 2021 19:58
Trump children still costing taxpayers
The children of Donald Trump are continuing to cost US taxpayers hundreds of thousands a month for travel, a government watchdog group has found.
US Secret Service agents filed $140,000 (£100,000) in receipts for travelling with Eric, Ivanka and Donald Trump Jr in February, according to the watchdog CREW (Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington).
The figure was for the first month after the former president’s departure from Washington DC, and does not refer to any Secret Service fees incurred at Trump businesses.