Former President Donald Trump has asked a federal judge to force Twitter to restore his account as his post-office-like online engagement has hit new lows.
The former one-term president has been unable to post on Twitter for the past 10 months, and CEO Jack Dorsey has shown no indication of reinstating his account.
According to Axios, in the motion filed against Twitter and Dorsey, Trump’s lawyers argue the company was “[c]oerced by members of the United States Congress, operating under an unconstitutional immunity granted by a permissive federal statute, and acting directly with federal officials, Defendant is censoring Plaintiff, a former President of the United States.”
There is no evidence to suggest Congress had a hand in the former president’s suspension.
The motion added Twitter shouldn’t be able to ban Trump, a national figure, because it “exercises a degree of power and control over political discourse in this country that is immeasurable, historically unprecedented, and profoundly dangerous to open democratic debate.”
In addition to Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and other social media apps shut down Trump’s accounts after the Jan. 6 Capitol riot, which many say Trump instigated and did little to stop.
Since leaving office, Trump has struggled to stay in the public spotlight. He has tried campaign-style rallies, launched his own platform, and published press releases styled as tweets, but none of it has worked, and many outside his base have moved on.
According to The Washington Post, Trump wanted to announce his candidacy for the 2024 election in August, but his advisers talked him out of it, explaining that an announcement this early would force a reshuffling of his newly formed fundraising apparatus and could hinder his ability to appear on broadcast television.
His advisers were also worried that an announcement would give Democrats the chance to frame the 2022 midterm elections around Trump, which would boost Democratic turnout, potentially hampering his plan if Republicans fall short next year.