Trump will soon be allowed on all major social media platforms he was previously banned from. But his followers have often complained that they wish he had put his phone down more. If Trump starts posting like before, it could push more Republicans toward DeSantis. Something is loading.
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More than two years after the attack on Capitol Hill, former President Donald Trump will soon have access to all the major social media platforms he was banned from – but returning to Facebook or Twitter could ultimately hurt his chances of winning back the presidency. in 2024.
“You could say that Trump is going to win by recovering because his voice will be heard louder,” Alison Dagnes, a professor of political science at the University of Shippensburg and an expert in political media, told Insider. “But isn’t he also kind of a loser when his voice is heard louder?”
After being banned from Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, Trump founded Truth Social last year and has been posting there exclusively ever since, even after Twitter reinstated his account in November following Elon Musk’s takeover.
Rolling Stone reported this week that Trump may be considering a return to Twitter after his exclusivity deal with Truth – which requires him to post on the platform first and wait six hours before posting on another. – must be renewed in June. And on Wednesday, Meta announced that it would allow Trump to return to its platforms, including Facebook and Instagram.
It remains unclear whether Trump will return to Facebook or Twitter, but his use of social media has always been polarizing, even among his own supporters. There are countless lists compiling Trump’s most “outrageous” or “offensive” tweets. While some were amused by the unpredictability, many Trump fans would say they just wanted him to stop tweeting.
Dagnes said when people don’t see Trump’s social media posts, they may forget how shocking and appalling he can be, but Trump’s return to those platforms might remind them. She added that while his social media behavior seemed to work for him in 2016 — Trump himself even suggested he wouldn’t have been elected without Twitter — it’s unlikely to play out the same way. this time.
“There is a burnout factor that has set in,” Dagnes said. “It was new once, but you can’t be new again.”
She said Trump had tapped into deep anger among conservatives, but now many lawmakers and right-wing media outlets are exploiting that grievance. Republicans who have been put off by Trump’s approach have other options to turn to and are less likely to put up with things about him that they didn’t like.
“Trump in 2016, for me, triggered feelings that people had that they had kept quiet,” she said. “And now that you no longer have to be quiet, there may be affected policies in the Republican-dominant states.”
One of the starkest examples is another potential candidate for 2024: Florida Governor Ron DeSantis. Dagnes said she thinks DeSantis’ star rose so quickly in the GOP because he picked up on that anger that Trump tapped into and followed it politically.
Unlike Trump, DeSantis rarely, if ever, makes headlines for something he wrote on Twitter. He’s not unpredictable on social media, and a lot of his followers don’t call him to put his phone down. He did, however, enact policies that directly impact issues that many Republicans care deeply about.
He supported and signed a bill banning discussions of sexual orientation and gender identity in classrooms. He spent taxpayers’ money sending migrants to Martha’s Vineyard in response to illegal immigration. And his administration banned “critical race theory” from schools as well as an African-American studies course.
Essentially, DeSantis has tapped into the exact same grievances as Trump, but does so through policies instead of constantly tweeting. And if Trump goes back to posting on Facebook and Twitter, he might remind some conservatives that they can have a lot of what they love about him, but without the tweet — with DeSantis.